DINNER AT YOUR DOOR
Dinner at Your Door is a St. Louis Park nonprofit organization that serves hot nutritious meals to the homebound and disabled. Westwood has supported through the years both financially and with volunteers. Westwood members deliver meals the fourth Thursday of every month and we have often delivered meals to members of our own congregation. For more information, you can contact Barb Bren.
LUTHERAN SOCIAL SERVICES OF MN REFUGEE SERVICES
The February Cause of the Month is LSS Refugee Services of Minnesota. This service assists federally approved refugees from various countries. LSS assists in helping refugees get settled, getting proper paperwork filled out, in providing case management, and with employment services. For more information check out their website HERE or contact Pastor Jason Van Hunnik.
WESTWOOD CAMP SCHOLARSHIPS
The March cause of the Month is Camperships! Camping ministry is a vital part of our kids' faith development, and we invite you to help make Bible Camp an affordable option for as many of our Westwood families as possible. Your donation will help send kids to experience a week in God's creation. At camp they will learn, play, laugh and grow in faith; creating memories to last a lifetime! For more information or with any questions, contact Dannica Olsen or Bekah Engstrand.
OUTREACH FOOD PACKAGING INC.
Each year, hundreds of volunteers come to Westwood to package meals to support children in Dodoma, Tanzania, who have lost a parent or guardian to AIDS. Our sister congregation, Arusha Road Lutheran Church in Dodoma, Tanzania, distributes these meals to its surrounding community. Our goal is to send at least 100,000 meals annually to Arusha Road. These 100,000 meals can sustain 275 recipients for one year. Westwood remains committed to this outreach mission by allocating $30,000 annually to sponsor the event. These costs are partially off-set through gracious continued financial support from Thrivent Financial and Westwood's Holiday Fair funds. Be a part of this valuable mission by donating an hour of your time to pack meals. For more information contact Brenda Knutson.
STEP FOOD DRIVE
The summer months are the most challenging for STEP (our local food shelf) because demand goes up with children and youth off from school and many volunteers and contributors away for vacations. As a result, Westwood holds its annual STEP food drive in the month of May. We will be collecting food during the month, culminating on Sunday, May 20th. You can also support this effort with a financial gift through the May Cause of the Month program. For more information on STEP check out their website HERE or contact Pastor Jason Van Hunnik.
UpWorks was founded as a Twin Cities based nonprofit 501(c)3 organization in 2011. From the beginning, UpWorks purpose is to walk alongside individuals as they developed goals for employment and/or education. Individuals are referred to UpWorks from partner organizations who assist adults with re-entering society from incarceration, drug and alcohol treatment centers, and other difficult life situations. Since then this initial purpose of celebrating and developing individuals has grown to include mentoring and career readiness programs and services for adults, as well as mentoring and prevention programs and services for school-aged children. Westwood currently has 19 members involved in this ministry. For more information, contact Ken Schempp or Nina Coleman.
LUTHERAN IMMIGRATION AND REFUGEE SERVICES
Due to ongoing events along our southern border, the Westwood Outreach Advisory Team has selected Lutheran Immigration and Refugee services as the July Cause of the Month. All funds will go to support this part of LIRS work. For more information about LIRS and other ways to be involved check out their website at HERE or contact Pastor Jason Van Hunnik.
COMMUNITY ACTION PARTNERSHIP OF HENNEPIN COUNTY
In 2014 Westwood joined with others in the St. Louis Park community to create a once a year event to support those in our community who may be in need. Since then it has been taken over by the Community Action Partnership of Hennepin County (CAPHC) who plans and leads this August event at the St. Louis Park Rec Center where those in short or long term need can enjoy a night at the rec center, connect to community resources, and be treated to services such as haircuts and massages. For more information check out their website HERE or contact Pastor Jason Van Hunnik.
REDEEMER CENTER FOR LIFE
Redeemer Center for Life is a community development organization founded by Redeemer Lutheran Church in 1998. Located in the Harrison neighborhood, we work to answer resident’s call for job growth, attainable housing, and youth development. For more information check out their website HERE or contact Pastor Jason Van Hunnik.
WESTWOOD COMMUNITY MEAL
On Wednesday evenings from 5-6:30 PM, Westwood hosts a community meal for folks from Westwood and our larger community. From humble beginnings of serving 40 people on its first night, this volunteer-led ministry now hosts from 200-250 folks weekly (150 during the summer) made up of Westwood folks coming to our ministries, families from the Westwood Childcare, people hungering for a space to build community, to folks in need of a good meal. While donations cover a portion of the costs, we invite you to help financially support this important ministry through a gift this month. We also are in need of additional folks to participate in making this meal happen. Please contact Ann Kisch with further questions or see more information HERE.
WESTWOOD EARLY CHILDHOOD CENTER SCHOLARSHIP FUND
As part of the Mission & Ministry of Westwood Early Childhood Center and Westwood Lutheran Church, a scholarship fund has been established. The purpose of this fund is to assist families with young children who are in need of financial support to meet their childcare expenses. These funds are available to children of all ages (i.e. infant through preschool) and are available to current families experiencing hardship as well as families who could not otherwise afford to send their child to WECC. We are blessed to provide our community with a caring, high quality, faith-based early childhood program. What a gift! Please contact Kellee Nelson, Director of WECC with further questions.
ARUSHA ROAD ORPHAN MINISTRY SUPPORT
Since 2005 Westwood has had a relationship with Arusha Road Lutheran Church in Dodoma, Tanzania. One of Arusha Road's ministries is food and education support of 150 Orphans from the community (many who lost their parents from AIDS). Westwood has pledged to provide support for at least 40 of these orphans through the food packed through Outreach Inc. in April and through financial support to cover the educational expenses. The cost to support one orphan is $225 a year. $175 of this amount will go to cover education costs and the rest helps Westwood package and send 100,000 meals. For more information contact Pastor Jason Van Hunnik. or to read more about our relationship with Tanzania click HERE.