Assistance Center of Towson Churches
 FYI

News

 
GENERAL BOARD MEETINGS ... for churches representatives, volunteers and pastors take place twice a year, one in the spring and one in the fall. The next meeting will be Tuesday, April 12 at 11:30 a.m. with lunch.


ACTC JOINS #GIVINGTUESDAY ...
For the first time, this year, on Tuesday, November 28, ACTC will take part in an international call to action - a day when charities, families, businesses, community centers, students, retailers and more come together for #GivingTuesday.
                                                                        
It's the sixth year people can come together during the holiday season to give back and support the causes they believe in. Your contribution to ACTC can make a difference for people in your community: between going hungry or feeding their family; becoming homeless or having shelter; going witihout electricity or keeping warm; not surviving or getting the vital prescription filled.

Every dollar counts. If you would like to become part of this worldwide outreach movement by contributing to ACTC on #GivingTuesday, send a check with the notation #GivingTuesday to ACTC, 120 W. Pennsylvania Ave., Towson, 21204 or use the Donate button here on ACTC's
Welcome page. Thank you in advance for making someone's day a brighter one.



 
WHEN HOMELESS JESUS VISITED IMMACULATE CONCEPTION ... A sizable and enthusiastic crowd assembled November 15 to take part in the special "Ecumenical Prayer Service" originated and hosted by Father Joseph Barr, pastor of Immaculate Conception Church. It was a unique opportunity to ponder the display of the famous, life-sized bronze sculpture Homeless Jesus by Timothy Schmalz, the church had been privileged to exhibit, while standing together in prayer for the homeless, sick and needy, blessed by Jesus in Matthew 25:31-46. It was also a time to honor the Assistance Center of Towson Churches that weekly serves people in crisis with emergency provisions and annually with its "Thanksgiving Basket" outreach project.

The event was acclaimed a success worth repeating by other churches in the future. Thank you to Rev. Ken Saunders, rector of Trinity Episcopal, for promising to be first in line, and to Pastor Father Barr, for his inspiration.



 
THANKFUL FOR FRESH MARKET ...  October 23, ACTC became the grateful recipient of a large donation of food worth $4,000 given by Fresh Market of Towson. It's because the market's manager, Roz Cheatham, chose ACTC to become the beneficiary of the corporation's month-long, district-wide competition food drive "$5, $3, $1" instituted this year for the first time. Money for the food was raised by the collection of contributions for the drive made by customers at the market's checkout counters.
 
For the delivery, three pallets were stacked high with a variety of nonperishables, including black beans, lentils, mother oats, rice, potato chips, diced tomatoes, beef jerky and soup. Shown here making the delivery are ACTC's food manager, Charlie Utermohle, left, with Fresh Market employees Phillip Addison, Joe Escobedo and Chris Johnson.

Fresh Market also supplies ACTC with bread, salads, sandwiches and desserts every week that are picked up by faithful ACTC volunteers.
                                                                         





'HIGH TEA TIME'
...
The seventh annual "High Tea" scheduled for Saturday, November 4 at the Immaculate Conception Church Parish Hall in Towson was another resounding success, replete with a variety of teas, homemade scones, sandwiches and desserts. Thanks again to its coordinator/originator Barbara Watts and her always cheerful, efficient team of volunteers for making this special event possible as a fundraiser for ACTC. It was a full house that garnered $3,600 for the center.




SUCCESSFUL"BACK-TO-SCHOOL EVENT"  ...
  Free shopping for school supplies for all school ages was offered again by the "Back-to-School Event" co-sponsored by ACTC and Valley Baptist Church on Saturday, August 19 from 10 a.m. to noon at the Valley Baptist Church, 1401 York Road.

Students of families registered with ACTC chose their needs from tables loaded with provisions donated by churches from a list compiled by Baltimore County Public Schools. Otherwise, starting the new school year on a positive note could cost a family
as much as $50 for each child.
                   
This year 137 children were helped the day of the program, and additional supplies were given to 180 children at the center, some inner-city schools and the Parkville school area in Baltimore County.

Thanks
to all of the donors who made this event possible.





SPRING MATCHING GIFT CHALLENGE HAILED A SUCCESS ...
Thank you to all of the 154 donors whose generous gifts brought ACTC within micro inches of reaching its $50,000 challenge goal. By the end of the day June 15, you had helped raise $49,160 - just $840 short. Making the success possible were 23 donations combined to form the $50,000 goal pool and 131 other gifts donated to meet the challenge, including 28 churches, church members, volunteers, board members, businesses, organizations and individual supporters. Doubling the impact dollar-for-dollar brought the final total to $99,160! This means, for one example, ACTC can feed 1,608 families of three with bags of food instead of only 804 families!  
You should feel proud of the difference you have made for needy people living in your community, and ACTC is very grateful for your support.


ACTC's SPRING MATCHING GIFT CHALLENGE: HELP CLOSE THE GAP ...
DEADLINE: JUNE 15
Matching gifts totaling $45,920 have thankfully brought us within 8% or $4,080 of reaching the $50,000 goal - just two days away from meeting the challenge. If you are thinking of giving, holding on to a check, or feeling inspired to double the impact your gift will have on providing food for hungry people in your community, send a check tomorrow, or donate electronically with the Donate button on the Welcome page.


ACTC'S SPRING MATCHING GIFT CHALLENGE: A SECOND CHANCE ...
When time ran out May 31, together we had accomplished something to be proud of by coming within only $834 from meeting our $40,000 goal. With a last-minute challenge gift of $10,000, we have received the chance to set a new goal of matching donations up to $50,000! We have extended the challenge now to last for two more weeks through Thursday, June 15 - an additional opportunity to double the impact your generosity will have in uplifting the lives of many homeless and families in need.
To donate: Call 410-296-4855; mail a check to ACTC, 120 W. Pennsylvania Ave., Towson, MD 21204 marked with the notation Challenge; or contribute electronically via the Donate button on ACTC's Welcome page.



ACTC's SPRING MATCHING GIFT CHALLENGE
ONE WEEK LEFT: $8,000 TO GO ...
Time is running out. Answer the call before May 31 to meet the $40,000 goal. As of May 23, there were 93 churches, volunteers, organizations and businesses whose gifts have taken us so close. Nineteen churches were represented. It's not too late to double the value of your donation and the impact it will have on uplifting people's lives. To donate: Call 410-296-4855; mail a check to ACTC, 120 W. Pennsylvania Ave., Towson, MD 21204 with the notation Challenge; or contribute electronically via the Donate button on ACTC's Welcome page.




SPRING MATCHING GIFT CHALLENGE UPDATE
THREE WEEKS LEFT: $18,117 TO GO ...
You still have until May 31 to double your money and do twice as much good for ACTC by joining its Spring Matching Gift Challenge. Thank you to the 17 churches, many volunteers, organizations and businesses whose contributions tallying $21,883 on May 5 have taken us beyond the halfway mark of the challenge goal. Because of the additional $5,000 we recently received for our matching pool, we have raised our goal from $35,000 to $40,000.
No donation is too small. A gift of any size doubles the difference you can make toward sustaining ACTC's 32-year history of mission driven programs and activities that uplift people's lives. For example, with your $50, 20 homeless instead of 10 will receive a Care Bag of food for their lunch or supper.

To make a donation: call 410-296-4855; mail a check to ACTC, 120 W. Pennsylvania Ave., Towson, MD 21204 with the notation Challenge; or contribute electronically with the Donate button here on ACTC's Welcome page.



KEEP ON SMILING ...
When you shop on Amazon. think about using its smile.amazon.com account. Millions of its products are eligible for donations. Choose ACTC as your charity and you will smile thereafter knowing that .5% of your purchase has been deposited in ACTC's bank account to help feed hungry people.





DOUBLE YOUR IMPACT ... Spring Matching Gift Challenge: Through May 31, 2017
Rise to the challenge by making a donation to the Assistance Center of Towson Churches now and your gift will be matched up to $35,000, dollar for dollar, by a group of generous ACTC sponsors. Your actions will double the difference your support can make for the less fortunate living in your community, with limited or no resources, who struggle to buy food, pay the rent or utility bills, purchase medicine or obtain transportation to see a doctor.

     Contributions such as yours enable ACTC to continue its 32-year-old mission of uplifting lives by "reaching out to those in need with God's love and provision" through giving food financial aid and other emergency services. To make a donation: call 410-296-4855; mail a check to ACTC, 120 W. Pennsylvania Ave., Towson, MD 21204 with the notation Challenge; or donate electronically via the Donate button on our Welcome page.

     Follow our progress and like us on Facebook. Please share on your social channels.

     This is ACTC's major fundraiser for the year. We hope you will take great pride in knowing the important difference that your gift makes.


 
CHANGING HANDS ... ACTC had to hire a new executive director when Cathy Burgess, shown right, its compassionate and steadfast director for 17 years, decided to pass her stewardship mantle on to someone else. Cathy's steadfast commitment to ACTC's mission since October 2000 has impacted the lives of families, individuals and the homeless by the thousands.
 Effective April 1, Linda Lotz became ACTC's new director. She has worked for the past year as Cathy's executive assistant and is an active member of Towson Presbyterian Church. Linda has already demonstrated her knack for leadership and caring by planning to extend ACTC's hours on Wednesdays until 6 p.m., beginning in June 1, to accommodate people in crisis who can't take time off from work, and by launching ACTC's Spring Matching Gift Challenge.
Cathy says, "Linda is joyful, prayerful and committed to the task of bringing ACTC to a new level of service that will offer more resources to our clients and provide more opportunities for our churches to be connected with people in our community who are in need."
We are glad to know that Cathy, loved and respected by all whose lives she has touched, has elected to remain on the staff working two days a week as ACTC's new position of Outreach Director. ACTC will remain in good hands.



THANK YOU HARRY AND JEANETTE WEINBERG FOUNDATION ... ACTC has been honored by becoming the grateful recipient of a $20,000 grant from the Harry and Jeanette Weinberg Foundation's Employee Giving Program, founded 10 years ago to reward Maryland nonprofits that have met the foundation's mission and guidelines. David Gilmore, managing director of investments for the foundation and a member of Hunt Valley Church, nominated ACTC "to support the general operations of this organization that provides emergency assistance and basic services for residents." He presented the $20,000 check, along with a crystal award, to our executive director Cathy Burgess at a luncheon celebration on September 27. David chose to support our work with this gift after participating in his church's food drive for ACTC.
Linda Lotz, ACTC's executive assistant, attended the special occasion and felt very uplifted to hear about the inspiring, wonderful good work being done around our area by the 24 other organizations that were this year's grant recipients. Shown in the photo posing after the presentation are David, Cathy and Linda.
 
 





 DID YOU KNOW?: ACTC participates in the "Food for Thought" program. Every month volunteers fill 260 backpacks with nutritious food to give students in six schools who need supplemental food over the weekends. Our number is expanded by several churches that have adopted students and are supplying bags weekly to several schools.



ACTC RECEIVES $5,000 GRANT FROM THE UPS FOUNDATION:
ACTC has gratefully received a $5,000 grant from The UPS Foundation for the purchase of 550 light weight, rugged polypropylene bins. They will replace heavy, cardboard bankers boxes now used by our senior volunteers to store and carry canned goods from two storage location to the center for distribution. The new tote bins cut the carry weight in half and will last for many years.

In accepting the check during a presentation in August at The UPS Foundation Timonium office, ACTC Executive Director Cathy Burgess said that ACTC was thrilled to have received this grant. "These bins will increase our efficiency,
lower our operating costs, reduce our environmental impact and promote worker safety."

Shown here at the presentation are ACTC board member Bob Hoyt, left, The UPS Foundation board member Dawntria Hudnall, ACTC Executive Director Cathy Burgess and The UPS Foundation board member Tom Ley.







A THANK YOU NOTE:

The Dulaney Valley Woman’s Club ended its 59 year history of
service to the community, cultural achievements,    
charitable contributions and fellowship this May with a luncheon celebration. The club’s final act of generosity was the donation of a check for $2500 to ACTC shown in this presentation, including its treasurer Virginia Hook, treasurer (left), Cathy Burgess, ACTC executive director, and Carolyn Hottman, luncheon chairman.





ACTC WISH LIST: In addition to food, the Assistance Center tries to offer other necessity items to its clients whenever they visit the center. Donations of the following items that are often requested at the center would be gratefully appreciated. They can be dropped off at the Assistance Center, 120 W. Pennsylvania Ave., during its hours of 10 a.m. to 2:45 p.m., Monday through Friday.

Cold Weather Needs
(Especially sizes for men and women)
Warm hats
Gloves or mittens
Scarves
Hoodies and jackets

Toiletries
(Sample sizes acceptable)
Toothpaste
Feminine hygiene products
Mouth wash
Depends
Shampoo
Soap
Toilet paper
Toothbrushes
Razors
Shaving cream
Hand sanitizers
Deodorant

Baby Items
Diapers - all stages
Baby food - all stages
Formula
Cereals
Wipes

Save your paper and plastic bags and drop them off too. ACTC often needs them for filling with food.



ACTC RECEIVES LEGACY CHECK:
Members of the Legacy Gift Committee of the former St. Timothy's Lutheran Church, Timonium, presented ACTC with a sizable financial gift at a gathering on Thursday, April 10. ACTC was honored to be one of nine local religious and nonprofit organizations to receive a check from funds that resulted from the building's sale and merger of its congregation in November 2012 with Grace English Evangelical Lutheran Church, Lutherville. St. Timothy's goal was to enable the continuation of its long history of service and partnerships with numerous nonprofit organizations, such as ACTC.

Shown here are ACTC volunteers and members of the newly merged congregation of Grace Lutheran at the presentation. They are Marty Marvel, ACTC Board member (left front); Lewis Nash, Legacy Committee and charter member of St. Timothy's; Thelma Davis, Legacy Committee and charter member of St. Timothy's; Madeleine Bryant, Legacy Committee; Anita Grooms, Legacy Committee; Dain Davis, ACTC volunteer (left rear); Rev. Jason Burns, former pastor of St. Timothy's; Rev. Pat Payne, pastor, Grace English; Bill Phillips, Legacy Committee and president of newly merged congregation of Grace Lutheran; Cathy Burgess, executive director, ACTC; and David Grooms, Legacy Committee.



LISTING OF USEFUL LINKS AND RESOURCES:  Introducing here a categorized list with links to some useful resources pertaining to finances, food, health, jobs, legal matters, utilities and multiple connections.


ACTC HISTORY: Watch a video of ACTC from its beginnings to 2013.
ACTC RETROSPECTIVE FOR 2015: A video report



DSS CODE BLUE POLICY UPDATE: When outside temperatures register 32 degrees or below, two shelters operated by the Community Assistance Network (CAN) accept up to 15 homeless people who walk into the shelters without a DSS referral on a first-come, first-served basis from November 15 to April 15. Code Blue walk-ins are welcome to enter the shelter after 6 p.m. and they exit by 9 a.m. the next day. No more than 15 walk-ins are accepted in the shelters on a daily basis and registration is required. The shelters are open seven days a week.

The two shelters under CAN accepting homeless people under the Code Blue Policy are:

Eastside Family Emergency Shelter
9100 Franklin Square Drive (next to Franklin Square Hospital)
Rosedale, MD  21237
For single women, women with children, and intact families only. Code Blue people sleep on mats/cots and have access to showers, bathrooms, laundry facilities and meals. They need to register and go through a preliminary modified Intake Process. To register, Code Blue guests need some type of identification card (driver's license, Social Security card, birth certificate, marriage license or photo ID).


Westside Men's Shelter
55 Wade Avenue (off of Frederick Road)
Catonsville, MD  21228
For men only, Code Blue people sleep on mats/cots and have access to showers, bathroom, laundry facilities and meals. They need to register and go through a preliminary modified Intake Process. To register, Code Blue guests need some type of identification card (driver's license, Social Security card, birth certificate, marriage license or photo ID).

DUNDALK EMERGENCY CODE BLUE CENTER:
When outside temperatures register 32 degrees or below, a Code Blue center is available in Dundalk's Government Building, 1747 Merritt Boulevard. Walk-ins are welcome to enter by 7 p.m. and they exit by 7 a.m.

A Department of Social Services Baltimore Shelter Hotline is accessible during working hours by calling 410-853-3000 option 2. During nonworking hours and weekends, an emergency worker can be contacted by calling 410-583-9398.

1/24/2015




 



 
 
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