The Mooresville/Lake Norman Christian Mission has been helping local families in need for more than seven decades. Last year they saw a sharp rise in the number of folks seeking help, and expect that trend to continue this year.
“Last year, we saw an increase of 800 families for a total of 4,800 families served. Despite the fact that some would say the economy is improving and things are picking up, people are still struggling to make ends meet,” said Megan Lynch, mission director of development and marketing.
“Maybe they’ve taken a job with a pay cut, or the main bread winner is sick or out of work. They could be living paycheck to paycheck and their car breaks down so they don’t have a way to get to work. Whatever the reason, they get farther and farther behind. And once you get behind, it can be very difficult to catch up.”
The mission works with folks to help alleviate the immediate problem, and continues to work with them to try and find long-term solutions. They depend heavily on donations of time, talent and treasure – both in-kind and financial – to do that work.
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In today’s paper, you will find the Mooresville/Lake Norman Christian Mission – as well as many others – in the Charlotte Observer’s annual Giving Guide, a list of area nonprofits that can use your help.
The list includes a description of what the organization does, contact information, and how you can assist them.
You’ll find groups working to feed hungry people, care for those who are sick, rescue abused and homeless animals and more.
The needs are great, but when everyone pitches in to help, amazing things can happen.
The mission is a perfect example. Lynch says the organization is like six nonprofits rolled into one to help low-income families with the many faceted problems of poverty.
Mooresville/Lake Norman Christian Mission offers crisis assistance to meet an immediate need, such as a rent payment to prevent eviction or a utility payment to prevent gas or electricity cut-off. If the problem is beyond what the mission can do, they will refer the client to a partnering organization.
Once an immediate need has been satisfied, the mission work with the client to address other poverty-related problems.
“Our goal is to get these families out of poverty so they can become self-sufficient. That’s what they want – they don’t want to keep coming back for help, but they know we are here if they need us. We offer dignity, not dependency,” said Lynch.
Other departments of the mission include the Mission Market, a client choice food pantry where clients select the type of foods their families want and need; and the Resource Store, where clients can select clothing, bedding and household goods.
Classes such as financial literacy, budgeting, interview skills, and more are offered to help provide the skills and tools needed to help improve their situations. And the mission offers nine transitional houses available for families needing a safe place to land while they are getting back on their feet.
Special services are available to seniors and disabled adults.
Lynch says the Mooresville/Lake Norman Christian Mission depends on the community even more this time of year to help provide holiday food and gifts for low-income neighbors.
“We are conducting a holiday dinner drive where we hope to provide 300 families with all the ingredients they need to cook a holiday meal in their own homes so they can make memories with their own families. We need hams and turkeys, and cash donations to buy the rest. You can sponsor a meal for entire family for $35,” Lynch said.
“We also have our Christmas Angel program in place, where you can call us or go to our website and adopt one child or an entire family to provide gifts for them. If you don’t have time to shop, you can donate money and our elves will shop for you.”
She says however little or much you have to share, or whatever it is you can do, your help is needed.
“Everybody has a skill or passion that they can share to help someone trying to get out of poverty. Everybody has something they can share to be part of the solution,” said Lynch.