As we enter the holiday season, many families look for and have a tradition of serving others. Community service has been found to not only have an incredible impact on those who are served, but it has also proven to be a valuable opportunity for families to work side-by-side and spend quality time together.
It can be difficult for parents to have conversations with their children about social and environmental challenges facing local communities. While groups and individuals face difficulties throughout the year, the need is particularly felt during the holidays. Getting out in the community and being a part of the solution is often the spark needed for kids to develop compassion, empathy, and a desire to help – experiencing service in their community first-hand.
Whether it’s financially, an hour a week, or a couple of hours a month, you too can change someone’s life! The following are a few incredible nonprofits in Round Rock and Austin that you can look at. I’ll also provide links to lists of nonprofits available in Cedar Park, Round Rock, and Austin.
TABLE OF GRACE: CHILDREN’S EMERGENCY SHELTER www.centraltexastableofgrace.org Table of Grace is a 501(c)(3) non-profit organization that exists to provide emergency shelter services to the children and youth in the foster care system. Table of Grace was established in 2014 by Stacy Johnson, a former foster child, who recognized the need for a temporary shelter for displaced children in Central Texas. Their mission is to create a loving, nurturing, homelike environment for displaced youth, providing shelter and healthy food as well as teaching healthy habits and life skills to the youth in our care.
SENIOR ACCESS – SENIOR ADVOCACY ORGANIZATION www.senioraccesstx.org Founded in 1993, Senior Access is a nonprofit providing transportation and support services that allow seniors in our communities to maintain their independence while continuing to live in their own homes. How would you do your grocery shopping if you couldn’t drive? How would you get to the doctor or pick up your prescriptions? Built on the premise that our senior neighbors lead happier, healthier lives when they “age in place”, your time or donations could help thousands of senior citizens without transportation to stay in their own homes.
MOBILE LOAVES & FISHES – SERVING AUSTIN’S HOMELESS www.mlf.org
Serving Austin since 1998, Mobile Loaves & Fishes serves the homeless community in three specific ways:
Truck Ministry - Thousands of volunteers hit the streets of Austin 7 nights a week, 365 days a year to provide food, clothing and other life-sustaining items to homeless men and women who are struggling to survive. Over 5.5 million meals have been served.
Community First! Village - The single greatest cause of homelessness is a profound, catastrophic loss of family. Community First! Village is a 51-acre master-planned development that provides affordable, permanent housing and a supportive community for men and women coming out of chronic homelessness.
Community Works - Provides micro-enterprise opportunities that enable our friends who have experienced homelessness to earn a dignified income, while also developing new skills and cultivating enduring relationships.