Our 2016 Christmas dinner was on December 11th, hosted by Rina and Jim Pennett’s family and friends.
It’s amazing what can be accomplished when a community works together. We are very grateful that when 500+ volunteers, motivated by God’s love, serve their neighbours who face difficult financial and life challenges. Thank you for your interest, prayers and ongoing support. The residents we serve, social service employees of the Regional Government and Police Services tell us the difference is strongly evident.
All of the following programs are ways to build bridges of hope and trust through relationships. Relationships founded through friendship that blind the differences of culture, religion and race, where the hundreds of volunteers and hundreds more families participate in life. The activities and programs we, at Front Line Outreach develop, are based on the foundational model of Jesus, the Christ of Nazareth, who through His teaching and actions of love and mercy, turned the world upside down.
The following experiences are true, names have been changed.
NEW! Excited about this!
Youth from smaller local church groups and low income housing get together on a regular basis at The EDGE where food, Santa Kidsfun and fellowship fosters a safe place to belong. A friendly atmosphere where activities like Archery tag (foam tips) and “Iron Chef” builds teamwork and a testimonial inspires youth to make healthier life choices. Thank you to Chris Weir, our Youth Director, for organizing and overseeing these events.
Mack and Karen work hard, but struggle financially working at low paying jobs. Carrie, a mom with a nursing degree, needs to stay home and care for her special needs child. They are truly grateful for the annual Christmas Toy Distribution. Unfortunately, they don’t qualify for much assistance because their income is just above the threshold; the cost of basic necessities leaves little for the extras. (Photo – 2015 Toy Distribution.)
Thank you Oakville Fire Department and Oakville Legion 114
350 Families are invited
Carmel and Kelly, were worried about having warm coats for their kids with winter looming, but when the flyer was delivered announcing the annual Winter Coat Distribution, they knew everything was going to be ok.
Thank you Oakville Legion 114.
Annually for six years, 180 families invited
It’s hard for Dave and Cathy to get out much as Dave is confined to a wheel chair. There’s always too much month left after the money runs out, but the summer bbq’s at their housing complex, sponsored by a group of friendly faces from the local church, make a big difference. Monthly community dinners, where the same friendly faces show up, mean these relationships continue.
Thank you to St. Simon’s Anglican Church and The Meeting House
Three years – 3,000 servings
Greg abandoned hope when he lost everything due to a mental health breakdown. He felt his only choice was to live under the bridge because the world was too hostile and his lifestyle too contrary for any landlord to tolerate. However, on Monday nights he is able to come to The Father’s House for a hot meal, takeaway snacks, non-judgemental conversation and pastoral care. Thank you Phil Carver for your compassionate care.
Maddie, a single mom of five kids, never had enough food to feed her growing family but now she doesn’t worry because she’s able to come to the weekly Food for Life pop up Food Bank around the corner from where she lives. The long days alone are broken up by sharing a coffee and conversation with volunteers and neighbours.
Thank you Food for Life and Oakville Legion 114
Sammy was in line, for the fourth time, for another burger!! As he stepped up to the bbq, Rita, a long-time volunteer smiled and cheerfully placed another delicious burger on his plate and smiled. ‘You must have a hollow leg’, but the truth be told, he didn’t get enough to eat at home, simply because there wasn’t enough in the cupboards or the fridge; he was a growing boy! He was actually taking some extra home to save for the next day or two. The weekly bbq’s held each week at the housing complex were a blessing because it meant not going hungry for a couple of days.
70+ Community BBQs, 17 locations, 25,000+ servings
Sarah sat on her step watching her friends jump on their bikes and take off for the playground a few blocks away. It had been several months since she wiped out on her bike; she couldn’t ride because her tire was flat and her Mom had neither the experience or tools to repair it. However, today the Rolling Horse Bike Clinic mechanics were coming and she would be able to have it repaired, at no cost, because that’s what they do, to bless the families, particularly the kids who can’t afford to pay for repairs.
Eight low income housing complexes
Devon, along with other Jr. high school teens living in low income communities, waited curbside for their rides on a July morning, where they would head off for the Leadership in Training (LIT) program to learn how to be responsible for others, how to lead and understand how valuable they are as a person. Devon, had low self-esteem and didn’t feel he was good at anything but after a couple of weeks in the program, began to realize his gifts and skills did not depend on being good at sports, which he wasn’t particularly interested in. His self-esteem improved, and when he put the LIT T-shirt on, he felt really good about himself, especially when the younger kids looked up to him as a ‘somebody’! He wanted to live up to that. 25 LITS
Cathy, Ty, Alicia and Pete, along with many others, who are financially unable to go to other camps, eagerly await the arrival of the Camp Dakota staff at their housing complexes. For Miriam, and many others who were new to Canada, being entrusted with strangers was unheard of because, as refugees, they always held their families close. Camp Dakota was a huge blessing for these children and their families because for two weeks the program was held in their own housing complex courtyards. After the summer programs were finished, they began to meet monthly at Kings Christian Collegiate gym, for lunch, sports, crafts, dance and games.
Thank you to Halton Region and King’s Community Church
Many thanks to our volunteers, collaborative partners, friends, financial supporters and suppliers.
As programs grow, in response to community needs, so do the costs. Over 90% of donations go to program expenses, please consider making a generous donation.
From our hearts to yours, Merry Christmas!
Can’t resist posting this photo of our grand baby, Franny at 14 months!
She is so precious to us!