Back Ministry Partner Spotlight: GraceWorks serves thousands of Williamson Co. residents in need

August 21st, 2013

Ministry Partner Spotlight: GraceWorks serves thousands of Williamson Co. residents in need
Ministry Partner Spotlight: GraceWorks serves thousands of Williamson Co. residents in need
Ministry Partner Spotlight: GraceWorks serves thousands of Williamson Co. residents in need
Ministry Partner Spotlight: GraceWorks serves thousands of Williamson Co. residents in need
Ministry Partner Spotlight: GraceWorks serves thousands of Williamson Co. residents in need

Have you ever lived paycheck to paycheck?

Imagine if you made just enough money to cover your monthly expenses without asking for help. What would you do if you had an unusual, unexpected issue come up—like a medical bill or car problem—but you couldn't pay for it?

That's where a ministry like GraceWorks steps in.

A grandmother who's become guardian of her grandchildren and can't afford to pay her utilities. A man who lost his job and is struggling to put food on the table for his family. A single mom with three jobs who's trying to make next month's rent. An elderly, homebound man who needs to see a doctor.

All of these are real-life scenarios they deal with every day.

As a Hope for the World Missions Offering partner, Brentwood Baptist has served hand-in-hand with this 18-year-old local ministry based in Franklin for years to help provide basic human needs for Williamson County residents. And volunteers are the steam behind this engine.

Each week, our members volunteer at their food pantry and thrift store. We've also participated in yearly Big Backpack Giveaways, giving students supplies for the school year. And since 2006, hundreds have donated food and supplies through our annual GraceWorks Food Drive in August.

Things you may not know about Williamson County residents:
• 15% of students in all Williamson County schools are economically disadvantaged
• 40% of students in the Franklin Special School District are economically disadvantaged
• 76% increase in families receiving food stamps from 2008-2013

Last year, with the help of 200 volunteers per week, GraceWorks gave out 14,789 Fuel Bags to students and 3,256 grocery carts to families—more than $1 million in food. And more than 31,000 pounds of the food and supplies were donated by Brentwood Baptist members.

This year, they've already served 38% more families in need than last year. Just since January, they've given $2.5 million in food, assistance, and supplies.

As time goes on, the needs continue to grow. But you can help right now.

Give your time. Whether that's 1 or 20 hours a week, you can prepare items for the thrift store and furniture sale, sort and shelve food donations, or drive senior adults to medical appointments.

Give your talents. They need people like you to meet with residents in need, assist with data entry in the main office, serve on committees, and help out with fundraising and marketing.

Give your treasures. More than 90 percent of GraceWorks annual budget goes directly to help the clients. You can donate items for the food pantry, thrift store, and furniture sale, shop in the thrift store, or give to our Hope for the World Missions Offering, which goes to support them.

To volunteer with GraceWorks, e-mail Vicki Howell, Community Missions Minister.