SAN BERNARDINO, CA- Continuing their efforts to serve, members of the National Council of Negro Women’s Inland Empire Section’s visited Meadowbrook Park and Mary’s Mercy Center in the City of San Bernardino on February 4th to give out over 200 hygiene care bags to the homeless.
“Our Section chose to collect items to prepare and give out ‘blessing bags’ to the homeless as a part of a regional Black History Community Service project initiative started this year by NCNW Southern California Co-Convener Dr. Helena Johnson,” said Inland Empire Section President, Milele Robertson. “Our members stepped up, donating much needed items for these men and women, but so did our community partners.”
The I.E. Section’s Director of Communication Kimberly Clark secured the help of Sam’s Club in Riverside that enlisted volunteers for the day, Sam’s Club in Ontario that donated 200 bags with giveaway items, and Thrivent Financial in Ontario, which donated funds to support the outreach. “Without their support,” said Clark, “our event would not have been able to serve so many. We appreciate their enthusiastic partnership.”
“We were happy to help,” said Kern Wilson, Club Manager of Sam’s Club in Riverside. “Sam’s Club is always willing to donate our services when needed in our community. In fact, we do this quite often and we look forward to future opportunities to work with NCNW.”
Responding to the NCNW I.E. Section’s Facebook recap of the event, Financial Associate Tara Walker also expressed Thrivent Financial’s pleasure in being part of the event. With these partners’ help NCNW members collected several hundred blessing bags filled with toothpaste and toothbrushes, chapsticks, socks, wash cloths, soap, batteries, sunscreen, lotion, and a variety of other essential hygiene items.
Having a key partner on the receiving end was equally important to the event’s success. Mary’s Mercy Center provided a great location to connect with people in need. According to Marsha Olguin, director of Mary’s Mercy Center, 250 to 300 people come through the Center each day seeking food, clothing, shelter, showers, and other needs. After enjoying a hot, healthy meal individuals also received a blessing bag from NCNW members and Sam’s Club volunteers.
“We are always willing to work with NCNW to assist the people who come through our doors,” said Olguin. “There is never too much that can be done to help others.”
In talking with the homeless, NCNW members learned how great the need really is. “We discovered there is a big need for blankets, shoes, and food,” said Jernine Williams, NCNW I.E. Section’s 1st Vice President, who led the service project’s coordination. “If anyone would like to donate any of these items, please email us at firstname.lastname@example.org. On the subject line type ‘Donations’ and a NCNW member will promptly reply.”
To get a glimpse of the day visit https://www.wevideo.com/view/848077621. Also, to learn more about the local NCNW’s activities, meetings, and events visit us on Facebook at NCNW Inland Empire Section@NCNWIESection or Instagram and Twitter @NCNW_IESection. You can also visit the Bethune Center, located at 141 S. Riverside Avenue, Rialto, CA 92376, or call us at (909) 874-6000.