The Greater Newburyport Mothers and Families Club Community Outreach Team is tasked with organizing and coordinating volunteer events and giving drives throughout the calendar year. The team tries to create balance in our community outreach efforts, by organizing events that give our members opportunities to volunteer as well as drives to support local organization in their efforts to care for families in the Greater Newburyport area. We have events and drives that have become annual traditions, as well as find new ways to help and creative ways to volunteer each year. We have made a conscious effort this year, 2014 to coordinate events that are more kid friendly in order to teach our children the value of giving back. The GNFC is grateful to be a part of this community where we take a strong civic responsibility.
Here is just a sample of what we do each year:
Since our inception in 1999, as part of our large parties (Halloween Party, Holiday Party, etc) we have organized all types of drives, collecting diapers, coats, books, pajamas, canned goods, school supplies, back packs and stuffed animals to support a variety of organizations, including the Community Giving Tree, Our Neighbor’s Table, the Salvation Army, Big Brother Big Sister, the Boys and Girls Club, etc.
Each May, we organize a Mother’s Day Basket Drive. GNFC members lovingly put together beautiful baskets to benefit moms at the Dare House and clients of the Jeanne Geiger Crisis Center. In 2012, our members made 26 baskets.
Each September, we organize a Back Pack Drive. GNFC members provide back packs full of supplies for children in our area. In 2012, 25 backpacks were donated to the Pettengill House’s Operation Back Pack.
Each November, we organize a Thanksgiving Day Basket Drive. GNFC members put together baskets that include all the fixings for a Thanksgiving Day feast, and the GNFC supplies gift cards so that each family can have some extra help in purchasing a Turkey. Baskets have gone to Jeanne Geiger Crisis Center and the Pettengill House. In 2012, our members made 38 baskets.
Our Neighbor’s Table: each January the GNFC sponsors a meal at ONT which is served by GNFC volunteers.
Spring Park Clean Up: each April we support the Newburyport Recreations Department Clean Sweep, a town effort to make our parks ready for play after a long winter. We donate all the food to the town’s effort as well as secure a number of GNFC family volunteers.
Yankee Homecoming Family Day: For the past 8 summers, the GNFC has hosted food, game or craft events at the Annual Yankee Homecoming Family Day at Maudsley Park
Salvation Army Dinner: each September, the GNFC Board cooks and serves dinner to over 100 community members in need.
Salvation Army Wish Upon a Star: In December we participate in the “Wish Upon a Star Program”. Our members and their families decorate stars that are to be distributed throughout the community and contributes a number of gifts to local families in need.
Consignment Sale Proceeds: through our annual consignment sales held in the Spring and the Fall, the GNFC donates a portion of the proceeds to a community effort in line with our mission statement to support local families. We have donated significant dollar amounts to the following organizations:
- 2008: Renovation of the Kid’s Lounge at the Turning Point Shelter in Amesbury
- 2009 & 2010: Newburyport Rail Trail Project
- 2011: Amesbury Town Park Renovation Committee
Other Events organized that may prove to be annual events:
Community Gift (2013): Gerrish Breast Care Center at Anna Jaques Hospital.
Kids of Cards: We organized an event for GNFC kids to make cards for hospitalized children in the area.
MSPCA: Story time and tour of MSPA in Methuen to teach children about the importance of showing kindness to animals
Habitat for Humanity: We organized a team of GNFC volunteers to help build a home for a family in need.
Pease Greeters: We welcomed home troops at Pease International Airport returning from Afganistan and Iraq.
Christmas Tree Santas: The GNFC provided food at the Christmas Tree Santas giveaway event. The organization provides over 200 trees to local families in need at Cider Hill Farm in Amesbury.