First Presbyterian Church of Raleigh has been involved in supporting work in Haiti for many years and currently is involved in these areas:
- The Haiti committee organizes an annual mission trip to provide medical and dental care, reading glasses, and to do light construction to benefit our Haitian partners.
- Throughout the year, we collect empty printer ink jet and toner cartridges, which are recycled at Office Depot. This effort generates funds to purchase school supplies for school systems for two of our Haitian partners.
- Individual church members and fellowship groups such as the ROCK Stars and the Early Birds sponsor primary school students in Haiti through Haiti Outreach Ministries.
- Prior to each annual Haiti mission trip, FPC members have contributed various medical, school and other supplies transported to Haiti by the trip team members.
Since the 2010 earthquake in Haiti, our church has led and coordinated annual trips for medical and construction teams to Port-au-Prince, Haiti. We work with Haiti Outreach Ministries and Mission Communautaire de l’Eglise Chretienne des Cites, our Haitian partner on the ground. The Haitian Mission team recruits volunteer physicians, nurses, dentists, and non-medical people to staff the medical and dental clinics. There are also opportunities to work in light construction, distributing reading glasses and participate in other non-medical activities. This annual trip usually takes place during the summer. Please contact Carol Anne Moehring if you are interested or need more information.
These activities are examples of our commitment and dedication to fulfilling the church’s mission statement, “Serving Christ from the Heart of the City to the Ends of the Earth with Love, Faith and Action.”
Bolivian Mission: The Eden School
Next year's Medical Mission Trip to the Eden School in Santa Cruz, Bolivia will be June 8-18, 2016
YOU ARE INVITED to join our vibrant mission of EDUCATIONAL SCHOLARSHIPS and/or yearly MISSION TRIPS to the Eden school in Santa Cruz, Bolivia. FPC supports 100-200 Eden students/yr (current scholarship = $400/yr).
Yearly mission trips to Eden provide week-long Dental, Medical and Vision clinics that serve over 4000 students and community patients. The cost is $1550 and the benefits are enormous for the Bolivians….and us!
The Friendship Fund
The Friendship Fund provides financial counseling and aid to those in need in our community. Conceived and administered solely by First Presbyterian Church, this ministry is funded primarily through gifts, 100% of which goes directly to people with a demonstrated need. An example of how the fund might help someone is an individual whose excessive medical expenses have led to an inability to pay for other necessities, such as rent, electricity, or water bills.
The Friendship Fund serves about 500 individuals annually. In 2015, the Friendship Fund served 680 clients, disbursing $99,400 in paid bills for an average of $172 per client.
The Friendship Fund offices are in our Community Outreach Building, 120 West Hargett Street. Call 919-833-4070 for more information.
Prison Ministries/Job Start
"Come, you that are blessed by my Father, inherit the kingdom prepared for you . . . for I was hungry and you gave me food, I was thirsty and you gave me something to drink, I was a stranger and you welcomed me, I was naked and you gave me clothing, I was sick and you took care of me, I was in prison and you visited me." 1 Matthew 25: 34-36.
Interfaith Prison Ministry for Women (IPMW) is a nonprofit organization with a mission to build bridges of hope for women in prison before and after release. www.ipmforwomen.org
With office at FPC, IPMW was started by Presbyterian women in 1977. Over the last three decades, the organization has provided chaplaincy services, transition education programs and re-entry support for incarcerated women at the minimum-security Raleigh Unit of the North Carolina Correctional Institution for Women (NCCIW), formerly known as the Raleigh Correctional Center for Women (RCCW). The organization carries out its mission in tandem with partner organizations, volunteers and the faithcommunity.
Job Start, one of our programs designed to serve these women currently in prison, is an extensive full-time class that helps them successfully transition into society upon their release. Participants in the program are paired with a mentor, who offers them moral support, advice, and a compassionate ear as they learn to set goals and reach or even exceed them. Computer skills, job interviewing skills, life skills, emotional literacy and social skills . . . these are just a few of the comprehensive topics offered by Job Start, within a faith-based context. Job Start is one of only a handful of programs in North Carolina that allow inmates to travel off prison grounds for counseling, lectures, and classes.
Alice Noell, Program Coordinator, says that the recidivism rate for Job Start participants is far below the national average for women inmates. Classes are held daily at the church. The growing self-awareness, energy levels, and rising spirits of these women are truly remarkable. Contact Jennifer C. Jackson (firstname.lastname@example.org), Executive Director of IPMW for more information.
Habitat for Humanity
Volunteers from First Presbyterian donate time, talents, and money to this international charity. For more information about the Habitat for Humanity organization, including its mission and goals, see their Web site. Or check the Wake County Habitat local affiliate's Web site.
The FPC Habitat team usually meets for a build on Saturdays at 8:00 a.m (7:30 a.m. June - August). It's a great opportunity for some very rewarding and often challenging work, great fellowship, and a chance to learn some valuable things you may not ever have to do for a living. We have been partnering with White Memorial Presbyterian Church since 1999, building one house per year. Our financial donations and labor are greatly appreciated.
Volunteers from FPC were also responsible for providing lunch for the workers on eight Saturdays. Various individuals and groups, including a Church School class and members of FCP youth groups, have graciously participated.
Named for the sister of Moses, who looked after him as he floated in his basket among the bullrushes, this fund aids families who are in need of assistance to pay for childcare. The Miriam's Basket fund was founded in support of the Halifax Court Daycare Center, which closed a few years ago. Now all gifts to this fund go to support children enrolled at the First Presbyterian Church Child Development Center.
We offer financial assistance to those seeking quality, Christian care for their children and need a little help paying for it. We encourage all the children of First Presbyterian Church to consider making a small contribution each year on their birthday, such as 50 cents for each year of age.
With the help of God (and a boost from his older sister), Moses grew to be a great and faithful leader of a nation. With your assistance, children in our community will have the same opportunity to grow in faith and wisdom.
Alcoholics and Narcotics Anonymous
We provide meeting space for two Wake County twelve-step programs, Alcoholics Anonymous and Narcotics Anonymous. AA meets Mon., Tues., and Fri. nights at 8:00 pm; NA meets Mon. - Fri. at 8:00 am. All meetings are held in our adjacent building at 124 S. Salisbury Street.
High School Equivalency Classes
We provide facilities for a series of Graduate Equivalency Degree (GED) classes run by Wake Technical Community College. We also provide childcare while classes meet.
A typical class schedule for GED classes at the FPC Wake Tech site might resemble the following:
- Tuesday and Thursday, 9 a.m. - 12 p.m. for enrolled or returning students
- Wednesday, 9:00 a.m. - 11:30 a.m. for new student registration and placement testing.
For more information about GED classes, check the Wake Technical Community College Web site, or call 919-715-3451.
The Linen Closet
First Presbyterian Church provides space for the Linen Closet Program, which is sponsored by Tabernacle Baptist Church.
In 2001, when Tabernacle relocated from the corner of Person and Hargett Streets to a new building on Leesville Road, they wanted to continue their "Love 'Em Through Linens" Ministry in Downtown Raleigh.
Since it began in 1979 as a service to people in need of household linens, the Linen Closet has been open twice a month on Thursday mornings, from October through March. If you have any linens to donate, you can drop them off at the church office or at the Outreach Office. Currently, they have a particular need for crib sheets. Peggy Gooch of Tabernacle Baptist is the program coordinator.
Family Promise of Wake County (formerly Wake Interfaith Hospitality Network)
First Presbyterian Church is proud to participate in the Family Promise of Wake County Program (formerly named Wake Interfaith Hospitality Network, WIHN), a service to the homeless in our community.
Responding to a documented need for particular assistance to homeless families, the Family Promise hospitality network provides a temporary, safe, friendly, comfortable space where families experiencing various types of housing and personal crises can remain together instead of being spread out among various men's and women's homeless shelters and foster care. We participate in this ministry by serving as the host church for 5 weeks each year.
For those accepted into the program, temporary housing, meals, toiletries, telephone service, diapers, etc. are provided free of charge for a period of 6-8 weeks until the family can get back on its feet. Various congregations of different faiths in Wake County provide overnight housing, while families are given space and services at a "Day Center" during the day. Volunteers at First Presbyterian provide transportation, dinner, supervised evening activities and safe overnight accommodations, breakfast, and a bag lunch to these families. You are invited to help with any of these needs. To help out with First Presbyterian's Family Promise commitments, contact Betty Ann Dorman, Don Becom, Wayne Campbell or Mickey Brock, or send email to WIHN--FPC.
For more information about Family Promise of Wake County, call (919) 832-6024, see the website for the national organization, http://www.nihn.org, or visit their office in Raleigh at 903 Method Road. Funds that are donated by our church are used for program operations, specifically their Day Center. We can also help Family Promise by volunteering our time and talents through serving as Day Center monitors or providing maintenance repairs, landscaping work, and donations of office, housekeeping, hygiene, and baby care supplies.
Pennies for Hunger
Pennies for Hunger is a simple and effective way to remember those who are less fortunate than we, and it's also a great way to introduce your children to the Presbyterian spirit of generosity. With minimal direction, your children can become actively involved in a worthy ministry that feeds the hungry.
The basic idea behind Pennies for Hunger is to collect and donate the spare change you can find around your house. A goal you could aim for might be to donate 2 cents for each meal you eat, or 6 cents each day. The second Sunday of each month, brass buckets are set out in the Sanctuary to receive your donations before or after worship. Bills and checks made out to "Pennies for Hunger" are also gladly accepted.
Food for those in Need
In the fall of 2005, we began a new ministry to help our neighbors in downtown Raleigh. On Sunday mornings, we distribute small bags containing basic food to anyone who asks for money to buy food.
If you are ever approached by a person in downtown Raleigh asking for money on a Sunday, you should direct the person with the request to the parking lot attendant, to the deacon on duty in the Stock Building, or to any deacon or staff member.
This new program is in response to the Downtown Raleigh Alliance (DRA) "Real Change-Not Spare Change" campaign, which asserts that giving money to panhandlers may merely feed drug and alcohol addiction and may not actually be helpful. By providing some immediate food, we hope to ensure that people who are truly hungry will be fed.
The Session of First Presbyterian Church voted in 2010 to partner with Wheels4Hope, a local faith-based car donation program that assists low-wage families and individuals in need of reliable transportation.
The Wheels4Hope program takes donated cars, repairs them, and places them with families who have been referred by other organizations, including Habitat for Humanity, Interact, the Raleigh Rescue Mission, the Red Cross and StepUP Ministry. Recycled cars change lives!
You can help with this program by donating a used vehicle, by volunteering with Wheels4Hope, or by spreading the word about the great work they do. For more information, go to their Web site, or call them at 919-832-1941.
Day of Service
First Presbyterian Church takes part in the annual Day of Service held on the Martin Luther King, Jr. Holiday. We help coordinate volunteer opportunities for children and adults and provide some transportation to work sites. Here's a registration form with a list of service projects that we will support this year.