Blog

Financial Literacy

The Mission of Love Charities will assist and teach clients to learn and understand the skills and knowledge to cope with personal financial matters, so they can fulfill and attain their personal, family, and community goals to be self-sustaining and successful financially.

New Trailer

This trailer is just the beginning of our effort to produce an inspiring “short documentary” telling the story of Mission of Love Charities and its good work in the community helping the most needy people among us.

Please consider helping us get a complete “short documentary” done by making a donation to the Mission of Love Charities, with the money earmarked to support the video.

Thanks for caring about Mission of Love Charities and the dear people we serve.

Click the following link to view the trailer: https://vimeo.com/575122838/8896cac7ee

Mission of Love Charities’ Job Training Program Presents A Meetings & Events Planning Course

Since earlier this year, the Mission of Love Charities Workforce Development and Job Training Program has offered a six-week Meetings and Events Planning Course. The course provides the principles and essential concepts for all phases of planning a meeting or special event. Students who successfully complete the course receive a certification that they are trained to manage meetings and special events.

In the course, Teacher Ingrid Shumate, who is an experienced professional meetings and special events planner, leads the students through an in-depth understanding of the process of setting up large-scale meetings and special events, contract negotiations, contract language, travel planning and innovative techniques that are necessary when planning a meeting in the context of the COVID-19 pandemic.

Given the negative impact of the COVID-19 pandemic, the hospitality and meetings business is currently trying to rebound, and there are a number of jobs available in the industry. Consequently, students who successfully complete this course and earn their certification are equipped to enter a high-demand job market. Stay tuned for the next class in September 2021.

Authors: Deborah Martinez, Molly Cox

High School Volunteers Learn Urban Gardening At Mission of Love Charities

This summer, eight high school students came to Mission of Love Charities to volunteer and work for five weeks as a part of the Prince George’s County Summer Youth Enrichment Program.

They came to the Mission to learn job-related skills, gain exposure to a professional environment and contribute to the everyday operations of the nonprofit that provides the basic needs of food, financial assistance for housing costs and job training to homeless and very low-income people in the community.

They also got involved in a special project to create an urban garden and grow food to supplement the pantry that supplies food for the Mission’s clients. They put down soil in plots on the Mission’s property, and now they’re growing vegetables and fruit in a garden in the middle of a concrete city.

Of course, the lesson is not lost that the urban garden is the natural remedy for a food desert in the middle of the community. The vegetables and fruit harvested from the urban garden help thwart the food insecurity that afflicts most of the Mission’s clients.

Why would high school students volunteer to do this?

One student explained that she wanted to challenge herself and her natural shyness by working with others. Another said that he “wanted to help people” who had less than he did.

The reality is that the food deserts (urban areas without fresh and affordable food) contributed to the uncertainty many individuals and families face – where will we get our next meal? This uncertainty was only exacerbated by the impact of the COVID-19 pandemic. Working with the student volunteers, the Mission came up with a plan to address this problem.

With the help and guidance of the Mission, the students created a green, lush garden that is yielding nutritious and tasty vegetables and fruit that will go to people who are hungry and don’t have the money to pay for food. Meanwhile, the students also learned how to create a budget, a plan with expected results, and a timeline for their project. They are literally seeing the fruits of their labor. Not only are they harvesting the wonderful vegetables and fruit, they then see that produce go to people who really need food because they can’t afford to buy food.

The bottom line is that the students learn urban gardening while also learning how to help people who are in need. Maybe that experience will teach them lessons they can use for the rest of their lives. And hungry needy people get fresh vegetables and fruit as a result. That’s clearly a win-win deal.

Authors: Deborah Martinez, Molly Cox

Get Vaccinated at Mission of Love Charities!

Do you want to get vaccinated so you can get back to great things? If so, come to Mission of Love Charities, Inc. on July 24th for your first dosage of the COVID-19 vaccine.

COVID-19 cases are rising again due to the new Delta variant so it is important to protect yourself and your loved ones by receiving the vaccine. Our vaccine clinic will be the ideal opportunity for your and your family to get vaccinated and get back to having fun!

Everyone over the age of 12 can receive the vaccine. Children ages 12-17 must be accompanied by a parent or guardian.

Click on this link to make a vaccination appointment. We will accept walk-ups too!

Follow us on social media to stay up to date on the Mission’s events!

Facebook: @missionoflovecharities
Twitter: @MOLC_inc
LinkedIn: Mission of Love Charities, Inc

Author: Molly Cox

LGBT Pride Month

Before June takes a bow, we must give homage to this historical month. Why? Because June is LGBTQ+ Pride Month!

What is Pride Month, you ask? It is a designated time to commemorate the struggles and celebrate the presence of the LGBTQ+ community. Specifically, Pride Month is in June to recognize the anniversary of the Stonewall Uprising. In June 1969, New York police violently raided a gay bar in Manhattan. Such violence was common, but LGBTQ+ activists responded in force with multi-day protests. Since then, the LGBTQ+ community has considered the Stonewall Uprising as a watershed moment in LGBTQ+ history. Since the riots, gay and trans rights activists have marched in June to remember and come together as a community. This month in Prince George’s County, our staff has remained cognizant of its history and meaning.

Mission of Love Charities shows its pride in many ways, including a hand painted rainbow sign in our facility. During the staff retreat, employees each decorated a letter to create the word, “Mission.” One participant felt inspired by June being Pride Month and painted the “I” with colors from yellow to green to brown. Honoring Pride Month, even in a small way, reminds us of the important contributions LGBTQ+ people offer to our society. At Mission of Love Charities, we believe in the dignity and worth of every person. We remain committed to serving low-income and homeless individuals in our community, regardless of sexual orientation or gender identity.

Author: Molly Cox

Interview with the Colombian Embassy

On May 27, Mission of Love Charities’ Lead Case Manager Yessica Molina spoke with the Colombian Embassy in the U.S. about how MOLC can support Colombians who resettle in the greater Washington, D.C. area.

En mayo 27 del 2021, la administradora de casos Yessica Moina, fue invitada por la embajada colombiana a un facebook live para hablar acerca de los servicios que Mission Of Love Charities tiene disponible para los colombianos que residen en el área de Washington D.C.

Please follow this link to watch.

Authors: Molly Cox, Yessica Molina

Juneteenth

Mission of Love Charities joins the many people in the community in celebrating this year’s Juneteenth Holiday. While we have celebrated this “Freedom Day” for years, this year’s celebration takes on new, added significance because the U.S. Congress and President Joseph Biden have made this day an official U.S. Holiday. Thank you President Biden and thank you members of Congress for this important recognition.

And Happy Juneteenth from the committed people at Mission of Love Charities.

Author: Deborah Martinez

Staff Retreat: Team Work

This week, our staff took a three-day retreat to eastern Maryland to sharpen our workplace skills, grow as a team, and take a moment to breathe. Sixteen months into the pandemic and our team has not stopped. Mission of Love Charities’ ten frontline staff has remained diligent and ready to serve the community. Today, the US vaccination rates are on the rise. On the other side, people hit hardest by COVID-19 are seeing unemployment benefits and rental assistance funding end. In light of this, we anticipate seeing an upsurge in client cases in the coming months.

Our senior leadership seized the opportunity to address employees’ needs via the retreat. Burnout, especially among frontline workers, has skyrocketed during the pandemic. An Indeed study found 67% of survey participants believed the global crisis has worsened burnout. Meanwhile, direct service nonprofits have not stopped to take a breath. Instead, MOLC expanded our services. Since March of 2020, we have stayed open Monday through Friday. We open one Saturday a month and offer nine workforce development courses. With the “go-go-go” mentality during the pandemic, many frontline nonprofits recognize the urgency of speaking to employees’ mental health. In an industry notorious for high burnout, nonprofits offering time to relax and additional vacation days can offset this invisible pandemic.

Cue MOLC’s staff retreat. Senior leadership fashioned it to develop the staff’s skills and provide time to unwind. Our work centered on two main topics: improving teamwork and client services. For example, a moderator led us in discussions and activities to improve our internal communication and trust. In one exercise, Social Media Manager Stephen Grasty led the blindfolded team through an obstacle course! It emphasized communicating and collaborating effectively – a lesson we will apply beyond the retreat. Other topics covered customer service, conflict management, and CPR/First Aid. We came out of these training sessions as a stronger unit. Lastly, our staff took much-needed time to relax by participating in a guided painting session. The next time you visit 6180 Old Central Avenue, come see our art!

Although we had fun, our efforts contributed to our goal: to support and empower people in need. We recognize our clients are our work. “Without the client, there is no us,” our moderator said. Our clients require assistance, we provide the services, and our donors make it all possible. To all of our clients and donors, we sincerely thank you.

Author: Molly Cox

Occupational Safety and Health Training Course: Session I

Mission of Love Charities’s motto is to empower, educate, and advocate for low-income individuals in our community. As part of its mission, it provides workforce development training to help people gain job-related skills, boost their employability, and gain economic stability. With this in mind, MOLC established its inaugural OSHA Training course which kicked off April 6, 2021. Five dedicated students learned about OSHA standards, policies, and procedures to work in general industry and the most hazardous positions.

Dwight Monroe, the Mission’s Warehouse Manager, earned his certification with OSHA through the course. He showed me his card during our interview. It announces that he passed the 10-Hour General Industry Safety & Health training – a certification that never expires.

The course had a low barrier to enrollment by requesting that each person had a GED. Due to the Covid-19 pandemic, the course took place online. Yet, the instructor and students remained undeterred. Dwight explained the teacher, Sheldon Primus, heavily engaged the participants. Sheldon showed the program content on his screen and hosted a chat forum with the students. He ensured the students participated and understood the material. For example, he might have asked them, “So Dwight, what are your thoughts on this safety procedure?”

As a participant, Dwight brought eight years of related work experience into the course. Yet, he still found the class helpful. Moreover, he rated the training 100% relevant to his current role as a Warehouse Manager. With this certification under his belt, he feels motivated to go for a higher level – the OSHA 30-Hour.

What did he think of the course? “I thought it was great,” he said, and it improved his career skills by adding a certification. He recommended the course and encouraged others to enroll, saying, “I wish that more people like [the Mission’s] clients had done the class.” With this positive review, the Mission will continue to sharpen the community members’ professional skills through its workforce development programs.

Author: Molly Cox

Brochure

We are proud to present our new brochure. Please feel free to share it with your friends and family. We are here to help, empower, educate and train as well as serve as an advocate for low-income individuals and families in our community.

We couldn’t do this without your support!

Open the Brochure

Author: Deborah Martinez

Workforce Development

Since 1991, the Mission of Love Charities has persisted in its commitment to serve the most needy people of the Prince George’s County, Maryland, community. The Mission does so by providing basic needs such as food, financial assistance for housing and utilities, furniture, and other services. Now, because of the coronavirus pandemic, the demand for these services has increased dramatically.

Most people in need have lost their jobs because of the pandemic, and it is unlikely that they will get those jobs back. With a new strategic priority on Workforce Development, the Mission of Love Charitiesis preparing itself to support this demographic, now and in the future. Providing people with the training to help them get back on their feet economically is perhaps the best long-term solution to their situation. The Workforce Development program will provide training addressing issues related to the causes of disinterest in seeking employment and offer tips and tools that will allow people to confidently and successfully seek employment.

Additional training offered includes basic computer skills, basic language skills, managing financial health and budgeting, goal setting, and how to dress for success – as well as specific curricula to prepare individuals interested in becoming certified in one of the following specialties; Nursing Assistance, Water Treatment Operations or Meeting Planning.

A major component of the Mission of Love Charities Workforce Development plan is the restoration and utilization of the abandoned public-school building (the former Lyndon Hill Elementary School -closed in 2006) and property across the street from its current facility that Prince George’s County has offered to the Mission with a lease of $1 per year. The Mission’s plan is to renovate and partially demolish the school building and make it into a modern, well-equipped facility for workforce development classes and activities.

The current projection, with the advice of an architectural firm and developer, is that the renovation of the building will cost roughly $3 million. While Mission of Love Charities has had substantial success in fundraising over the last year, it still needs to identify and attract more funding support to complete the renovation of the school building.

Training Courses

Employee Readiness Boot Camp
A free and remote 5-week program for individuals looking to strengthen their resumes and their confidence. Topics to covered include: Temperament Assessment, Strategic Thinking, 7 Habits of a Highly Effective Person, Racial Sobriety, Situational Leadership, Developing High-Performance Teams, Group Development Process, Conflict Resolution, Decision Making and Meeting Management.

Meetings 101
A 6-week program for individuals looking to strengthen their resumes and their confidence. Topics to covered include: Temperament Assessment, Strategic Thinking, 7 Habits of a Highly Effective Person, Racial Sobriety, Situational Leadership, Developing High Performance Teams, Group Development Process, Conflict Resolution, Decision Making and Meeting Management.

Certified Nursing Assistant (CNA)
In collaboration with Heritage Care Inc., we are offering a Maryland-certified nurse training program in an effort to create new opportunities. The classes are available to individuals who wish to gain a new certification. Students will gain practical, hands-on experience and learn from professionals while fulfilling their school’s internship requirements. A student must pass the written and clinical component of an exam. Once completed, the student will be qualified to work with elderly patients in a long-term care facility. Please note that graduates of our program are required to maintain employment in our facility for at least four months after receiving their license.

English 101
Study and application of the principles of writing. Students read, analyze, write and discuss, descriptive, and argumentative essays, as well as learn to develop ideas fully, organize them effectively, and express them clearly.

English as a Second Language (ESL)
Our ESL Program consists of six levels, from basic to advanced, where students learn how to interact in every-day-life situations and develop their oral, reading and writing skills, necessary to pursue better job opportunities. Nuestro programa de inglés tiene seis niveles, de básico a avanzado, donde los estudiantes aprenden como interactuar en situaciones cortidianas y desarrollan sus habilidades de hablar, comprender, escribir y leer.

Re-Entry Workshop
A program designed to assist individuals with a successful transition to their community. Improving reentry is critical to reducing drug use and its consequences.

Occupational Safety and Health Training
This course covers OSHA Standards, policies, and procedures in general industry. Topics include scope and application of the OSHA General Industry Standards, general industry principles and special emphasis on those areas in general industry which are most hazardous.

Author: Deborah Martinez

The Creation of a Sponsors Council

The mission of Mission of Love Charities has always been to serve homeless and low-income families and individuals in the community.

Mission of Love Charities programs and services provide basic needs assistance in the form of food, financial assistance for rent and other housing costs, clothing, furniture, showers, laundry, computer access. Mission of Love Charities is also planning on re-instituting its Workforce Development program.

Everyone served shows proof that they are at or below 150% of federal poverty guidelines. These are poor needy people.

We are now reaching out to our friends and colleagues in the community to organize a formal support group that we will call a Sponsors Council. Corporations, foundations and individuals who choose to join the Council will make a commitment to support Mission of Love Charities through a financial donation and other actions that help sustain the work of Mission of Love Charities.

Since its inception, The Mission has successfully supported about 400,000 individuals and families and we want to support more. However, over the last several months, the destructive effects of the pandemic have created a dramatic increase in the number of individuals and families who come to Mission of Love Charities in desperate need of help.

How You Can Help
In order to sustain our work and help these people who are in dire need, we are reaching out to the community to ask our supporters and stakeholders to partner with us by joining a Sponsors Council. We know these current and prospective partners share our values and commitment to our community and to the people in need in our community.

What the Mission is Doing

  • Food Pantry
  • Operating the only five-days-a-week Food Pantry in Prince George’s County remains a priority for Mission of Love Charities. The number of individuals and families who are going hungry because of lack of money to buy food had increased dramatically, and Mission of Love Charities is committed to serving them as best we can. Stocking and operating the Food Pantry continues to be a major expense, but it is an essential service that Mission of Love Charities is committed to operate.

  • Financial Assistance for rent, utilities and other housing costs
  • While our capability to help people with housing insecurity, i.e., rent and utility payments, is limited due to pandemic restrictions, we are still able to help some families and individuals, when funds are available. We could help many more families with more support.

  • Basic, Essential Support Services for People in Need
  • Despite limitations mandated by the coronavirus pandemic, Mission of Love Charities is able to provide people with basic support services such as showers, access to laundry machines, free clothing and free furniture, access to computers and a designated place to receive personal mail.

  • Referrals for primary care, dental care and mental health
  • Mission of Love Charities continues to seek out and explore possible collaborations with health care providers so that we can have a more seamless and reliable support system for the people we serve.

  • After-School and Weekend Supplementary Education Programs
  • Mission of Love Charities is seeking partnerships and funding to create after-school and weekend supplementary education programs for school-aged children. The remote learning process being utilized by school systems is not working well for those children whose economic circumstances prevent them from having access to those programs. Supplementary education programs are needed to ensure that these children are not left behind.

  • Workforce Development
  • In addition to providing food and housing assistance, Mission of Love Charities sees the long-term solution to helping these needy people get them back on their feet and become economically self-sufficient is workforce development, education and skills training. Mission of Love Charities has years of experience in this task, and although this initiative is currently curtailed due to the pandemic restrictions, the organization is planning a new, enhanced workforce development program in a new facility beginning in 2021. Currently, Mission of Love Charities is in talks with professional associations and local educational institutions to develop, implement and manage training and certification programs for people seeking employment. While basic employability skills are a priority for this program, additional certification programs will be established to train water treatment technicians, terrazzo craftspeople and Nursing Assistants.

The Creation of a Sponsors Council to Support These Essential Operations
In order to sustain these operations and continue to meet the increased demand for services as best we can, the Mission of Love Charities is creating a formal Sponsors Council, which will comprise committed friends and stakeholders who will support the Mission through annual donations and other advocacy and advisory roles,

While it is expected that the Mission of Love Charities Sponsors Council would meet annually, virtually for now and hopefully in person in the future, members of the Council will be involved in Mission of Love Charities by making an annual financial donation and by offering advisory and advocacy support on an ongoing basis.

Giving levels in the Sponsors Council will be as follows:
Corporate Member – $10,000
Industry Member – $15,000
Founding Member – $20,000

Members of the Council will be recognized with annual certificates that document their commitment and support to one of the leading organizations in the Prince George’s County that serves the most needy people in our community.

Council Members will be joining the ranks of others who are providing significant support to Mission of Love Charities. Among those agencies, foundations and corporations that are already supporting Mission of Love Charities are: Prince George’s County Government, the State of Maryland, the University of Maryland Capital Region Health System, Sam Brin, Philip Graham Fund, Greater Washington Community Foundation, Big Lots Foundation, TJX Foundation, Albertsons Foundation, Easterns Automotive and Urban Investment Partners.

The fact is that Mission of Love Charities continues to sustain a growth in revenue through an aggressive and successful fundraising effort, and these supporters are evidence of the results of that effort.

Please join us
We would hope you would join us in our mission of serving the most needy people of our community. Please join us by becoming a member of the Sponsors Council.

For more information please contact me at dmartinez@molc-inc.org.

Author: Deborah Martinez

Mission of Love has the following goals for FY2021

  • Providing 1,800+ individuals and families with clothing and furniture needs.
  • Providing 4,600 families with food through its new food pantry
  • Screening 1000 + families and individuals seeking financial assistance for rent and security deposit.
  • Providing meals to at least 500 homeless individuals at its day Center
  • Providing 250 families with back-to-school supplies and backpacks;
  • Providing 200 homeless individuals with snacks and toiletries
  • Providing 250 families with Thanksgiving food baskets;
  • Providing 250 families with Christmas food baskets; and
  • Providing 200 families with new toys for Christmas.

Author: Deborah Martinez

Mission of Love Charities