Essential Family Needs
To fulfill its mission, CHRS makes every effort to respond to families needing help with essential needs. CHRS’ response has included the purchasing of food for families who can not afford it and the provision of monetary assistance with utility bills in an effort to keep heat on during winter months. As with the other programs, these needs are brought to the attention of the Board of Directors who makes a decision as to whether to provide assistance and the exact allocation of funds.
Those who are helped by CHRS are from lower economic families in Omaha, Nebraska and surrounding areas. They have limited or no financial resources. The children often have no coats or shoes and only a very few articles of clothing. By providing basic essentials for these children in need, CHRS fosters an environment of hope.
CHRS has been working with a specific public school, Field Club Elementary School in Omaha, Nebraska. Field Club has a large population of children in need. CHRS has been providing food, clothing, shoes, and other similar necessities to these children and their families.
Requests for clothing, shoes and coats are received through Needs Assessment Forms that are completed by teachers and staff of Field Club Elementary School. The Needs Assessment Form identifies the specific recipient and his/her clothing, coat and shoes needs. If any siblings are also in need, the form is also used to communicate those needs. The forms are delivered to the CHRS Board of Directors. The Board evaluates each request and determines the amount of funds to be allocated. CHRS volunteers purchase goods and deliver them to the staff of Field Club Elementary School. School staff members make home deliveries.
An exciting change will be taking place in this program for the 2010-2011 academic year. CHRS will maintain a space at Field Club known as Christopher’s Closet. An inventory of children’s’ clothing and shoes will be maintained within Christopher’s Closet, allowing for a more timely response to individual needs. Allowing access to and stocking of the closet will still be the responsibility of the Board of Directors. It is our hope to expand this program to other schools within the community as resources allow.
In order to promote the importance of education, CHRS provides new bikes and helmets to elementary school students who have earned them through good behavior and scholastic achievement. The program is administered through Field Club Elementary School. Students qualify for the program through their actions and behavior throughout the school year. Qualifying students are entered into a school-wide drawing which is held at the end of each school year. Each winner receives a new bike and helmet. Annually, the CHRS Board of Directors determines the number of bikes to be allocated to the program. In 2009, CHRS donated 28 bikes to the program.
As CHRS expands, it will offer this program to other schools and community-based organizations in order to reach those in need.
CHRS sponsors activities that promote social welfare. The following types of activities are approved at the discretion of the Board of Directors: soccer camps, outings to movies, in-school parties. Such requests are delivered in person or in writing to CHRS. The Board evaluates each request to determine whether it is appropriate and feasible for the request to be fulfilled by CHRS. If approved, CHRS staff members work with the requesting organization to plan and conduct the activity. CHRS Foundation staff members stay actively involved throughout the process to ensure that CHRS funds are used appropriately. Examples of recent activities include the provision of lunch each day for a week long soccer camp for underprivileged children and a quarterly celebration for Field Club students exhibiting good attendance.