A Saturday, Oct. 19 church fundraiser exceeded expectations, netting $1,200 with a bake sale and a winter clothing giveaway.
Organized by the Cordova Church of the Nazarene, the event raised funds for Operation Christmas Child, a program that distributes care packages containing toys, clothing, school supplies, toiletries and other staples to children in over 100 different countries and on U.S. Native American reservations. Operation Christmas Child is an ongoing program run by Samaritan’s Purse, an evangelical humanitarian aid organization.
Pastor Steve Leppert was able to distribute over 100 items of clothing during the giveaway, fully more than two-thirds of his inventory. Voluntary donations were collected at the giveaway.
“The uniqueness of this town is that we love having rummage sales,” Leppert said. “All of these clothes could be in the landfill right now, if we didn’t have a place for them.”
Leppert said he was concentrating on gathering high-quality toys like harmonicas and soccer balls for Operation Christmas Child’s “shoebox” care packages.
“They’re not getting cheap stuff, like little plastic toys that are just going to break,” Leppert said. “We want them to have stuff that’ll last a long time.”
A minimum of $9 per care package is required to cover shipping. Leppert hopes the church will be able to assemble 40 care packages this year, he said.
The winter clothing giveaway and bake sale event was held at the Salvation Army’s First Street facility. Events held on First Street usually draw far greater attendance than ones held at the more out-of-the-way church building, Leppert said. The church has maintained a close and mutually supportive relationship with the Salvation Army, making substantial monthly contributions, Leppert said.
The Salvation Army’s First Street facility, which previously served as a thrift shop, currently stands vacant. Renovations are planned for spring 2020, after which the facility will serve as a Salvation Army food bank, Leppert said.
Leppert hopes that it will eventually be possible to erect a small building near the harbor dedicated to rummage sales and other fundraising activities, which could be used to support organizations like the Cordova Volunteer Fire Department or the Cordova Jr./Sr. High School Band.