Friday, January 30, 2015

Four Straight Years of Grant Support has secured food needs for thousands of underfunded UVA Hospital Guests and Out-patients

As we entered 2015, the Bama Works Fund of Dave Matthews Band in the Charlottesville Area Community Foundation (CACF) provided a Grant of $6,000.00. This grant is solely dedicated to our Food Program. With this grant the Fund has contributed a total of $34,000.00 in the last four years.  Interfaith Humanitarian Sanctum (IHS) is just one of fifty-four (54) Organizations in Central Virginia area receiving $354,300.00 in grant awards as this New Year begins. 

This Grant is impacting on two distinctive IHS food programs

The UVA Hospitality House (HH).  The thirty(30) room facility which can lodge about sixty(60) people is the only affordable opportunity for lodging for indigent and unfunded long distance out-patients and caregivers who must come for treatment at the UVA Medical Center in Charlottesville. UVA Hospitality House does not have a budget for food and kitchen related items, and is supported through donations. Although HH receives a small grant from the Emergency Food Bank, the most consistent supplier is IHS. And this specific grant has been the main reason for this charity's ability to secure a monthly fulfillment of needs for HH guests.

The Full-day Meal Packet Program.  IHS stocks a large cabinet in the Office of Social Work in the main hospital, which allows UVA Social Workers 24/7 access to provide underfunded guests with proper nourishment. Presently, from 250-300 full-day meal packets are delivered monthly. This translates in an active use year to 3,000 packets, or approximately $19,500.00. The program is mostly a community effort, whereby churches, schools, clubs, scouts, day-care centers, businesses, hospital clinics and families buy and assemble packets and deliver to IHS volunteers to keep the cabinet full year-round.  When participation is reduced in summer and holidays, the Bama Works Fund is accessed to purchase supplies for maintaining consistent delivery to the Office of Social Work.

A Special Letter from Mary Jackson, Supervisor, UVA Hospitality House
"IHS support is crucial to Hospitality House. The other sources of food for our guests do not come close to meeting our needs. Your supplies are in such contrast to the contents of other donations, especially food like fresh fruit, vegetables, dairy products, cereals, and eggs - the kinds of foods that really help a high percentage of our indigent guests. Your personal attention to purchasing food as needed, and with delivery of items this past year from Whole Foods and Hot Cakes Restaurant was an added bonus for guests. The absence of budgeted funds for food leaves us totally reliant on contributions to help the increasing number of guests, more and more of whom stay in excess of six weeks. I could go on with proof of your importance, but let me repeat that what you do is absolutely vital to the well-being of our guests."
To the Bama Works Fund of Dave Matthews Band in CACF Committee ... Thank you for allowing this group of volunteers the needed funds to assist in the feeding of the least able visitors to our community.

Sincerely ... ALL of IHS, the UVA Social Staff and UVA Hospitality House Staff

Friday, January 16, 2015

IHS to Receive The Martin Luther King Jr. Community Celebration Beneficiary Award

Martin Luther King Jr., 30th Annual Community Celebration will be held this Sunday, January 18, 2015 at 5:00pm at Mt. Zion African Baptist Church
105 Lankford Avenue, Charlottesville, VA  

The 30th Community Celebration of Charlottesville has announced that its 2015 annual community beneficiary award recipient is the Interfaith Humanitarian Sanctum. The celebration beneficiary committee selects and awards a local non-profit community service group or organization the proceeds from the celebration offering. The size of the award depends upon the size of the offering.                                

IHS is a totally independent, non-profit, non-religious, ALL volunteer, no stock, 501(c)3, public charity which was formed initially to serve indigent and underfunded long distance patients who must come to UVA Medical Center for treatment. The charity works closely with the Hospital Social Work staff which determines eligibility for assistance, especially for temporary lodging and food and has maintained a silent role as a 24/7 provider for meeting immediate physical needs as requested by a Social Worker at all hours every day since June 2009.

Rev. Elisheva Clegg, Vice President and a Founding Member of Interfaith Humanitarian Sanctum will speak to the gathering this Sunday, and express appreciation for the committee's expression of faith in the charity's efforts on behalf of serving the least able among us. The IHS slogan from day one of its formulation reflects the outreach which was in Dr. King's message. That message is
"You don't have to know someone to be a friend."
The Celebration committee will also announce at the gathering the 2015 recipient for The Martin Luther King Jr. Community Award which goes to a resident of the greater Charlottesville area who has demonstrated Dr. King's commitment to civil rights and to improving understanding between peoples of different races and ethnic backgrounds.

The keynote speakers for this 30th anniversary will be two pastors who have been very active in the community for many years. Rev. LaVert Taylor, previously of First Baptist Church - Main Street, and Rev. Wayne Arneson, previously of Thomas Jefferson Unitarian Universalist Church - both of Charlottesville.

The Community Welcome will be provided by Rabbi Daniel Alexander, Senior Rabbi at Congregation Beth Israel. The Statement of Purpose will be offered by Dr. Teresa Sullivan, President, The University of Virginia.  The MLK Community Choir will provide spirited music for the occasion under the direction of Mr. Jonathan Spivey.


Sunday, January 4, 2015

Still a Productive Year for this Silent Charity

Today is December 31, 2014 ... and I received 138 e-mails reminding me that the deadline for providing a donation for tax deductible contributions is tonight.  I would so like to have the personal funds to contribute to so many worthy causes, but just as you, I have limitations. But - I am reminded by the quantity of requests of the devotion of so many who are seeking to make a difference for the least able among us. My suggestion is to read about the efforts of these charities, do your research, and feel confident that your dimes or dollars are making an impact.

We are not going anywhere after Midnight

We will be on standby 24/7 for Social Workers at UVA Medical Center for the underfunded and indigent patients and caregivers for some very specific needs when no other resource is available.  This morning at 3 AM I received a call from ER  that a patient was released and sitting in the lobby, very tired, nowhere to lie down, and her ride home to the Virginia coast would not arrive until early afternoon. The ER Social Worker, having explored possible placement into UVA Hospitality House without luck, simply asked,
"Can you allow her a place to rest for the remainder of the morning until she can leave town. It's been a long day for her. She simply can't afford a room."
Within 5 minutes, she had a room and access to a meal packet. A taxi took her to the hotel.

The ability to react so quickly and positively is because of donors who read these e-mails.

So - on behalf of the volunteers who have supported this non-paid ALL volunteer charity, THANK YOU so much for allowing this patient a place to rest, and a full day meal packet to sustain her until her arrival back at home. THANK YOU for allowing us to go to a most helpful
Walmart and pick up eleven (11) infant car seats just yesterday for re-stocking the UVA Pediatric Clinics when called.  Oh... they did JUST call and say that
"We have babies from  underfunded families who  need a car seat  to get home this week. Can you assist us?"
The answer will continue to be ...  YES!

In the weeks ahead I will seek to summarize those generous groups who have responded in the last two months to our calls for support with the food program.  Most individual donors who sent  funds for lodging, food, prescriptions, travel and pediatric needs do not wish to have their names mentioned, but we are so appreciative of  your generosity.  So much good was accomplished because of ALL of you in 2014.  NOW  (as we used to say in the 60's), THE  BEAT GOES ON!

You can make your end of year contribution which is tax deductible until midnight tonight by clicking our DONATE BUTTON below, and remember your information to PayPal is completely secure, confidential and encrypted using all the newest technologies available:

Sincerely ...T. Wade & Elisheva Clegg and Sam McLawhorn -  
Founding Members IHS