A Wider Circle Provides "A New Life"
By Sarah Ford on November 14, 2013
A Message from A Wider Circle Founder, Mark Bergel, Ph.D.:
On Tuesday evening, a woman came to A Wider Circle. It was after 6:00 p.m. - after we "close." Five Wider Circle team members had remained to help load up the truck of this woman who, with her children, was escaping domestic violence. She was heading out of state right away, in fact, to an apartment three states away.
The plan was that as soon as they got their items from us, they would drive the truck all night to their new home. The mother was eager to start a new life where fear and pain would be replaced by hope and opportunity. She arrived, full of stress from a day of trying to get everything in order for their new life. Even getting the truck, she shared, was a very difficult process.
Within five minutes of being here and seeing all that was about to be hers, the only emotion was joy. Our team loaded up three beds - and with each, there was a louder shriek of joy. Then the televisions, end tables, lamps, table and chairs, food, sheets and blankets... and right on up to the vacuum cleaner that filled the back of the truck. Seeing her transform in the 30 minutes that she was here was a reminder of the spirit with which we try to serve every family that comes - every day of the year. It was dark and cold, but nobody here felt anything other than hope.
Your Support Makes Stories Like This Happen.
Ways to Help this Holiday Season:
- Speaking of hope, we are very much in need of Thanksgiving food (we give out the non-perishables and then provide gift cards if we have them so that families can get the perishables when they are ready).
- We are also looking for sponsors for the December holiday effort. Hundreds of families are on our list to receive holiday support; if you want to sponsor a family with your family or your company - or a group of friends... please let us know.
- If you want to consider alternative gift giving ideas for your own family and friends this year, please check this out!
- A Wider Circle's latest initiative: we are partnering with the leadership of a church in one of the lowest-income neighborhoods in our nation's capital region. Our first effort will be this Saturday, November 16, 2013, when we bring our truck for a morning of distributions. If anyone has done food drives, coat drives, blanket drives, etc., please bring them by tomorrow. I guarantee you the items will find grateful homes. What I can also tell you from my time in the neighborhood there is that one out of every two windows had no glass (usually wooden boards) and the mothers and fathers spoke of dire need, especially with the winter setting in. We can help them to have a different experience of the season.
I know listserv emails increase this season; we try to be sensitive to that while still sounding the call for help. I hope you will answer that call and also spread the word to your networks. There are enough blankets, hats, and coats to ensure that nobody goes without. I just got off the phone with a mother who sounded as desperate as could be. There is no need for that, not here in this country, with all that we have.
Please help us show what is possible when those with the greatest need become our greatest priority.