Local Outreach Opportunities
Through St. Paul’s Alternative Christmas program, you can give others a gift that impacts lives around the world. Very simply, Alternative Christmas enables you to support a ministry or organization and provide your recipient with a holiday card to show that a donation was made in his or her name. For more information, contact Joan Zimmer or Heather Bodenschatz.
On Wednesdays during Penn State’s fall and spring semesters, St. Paul’s hosts the Bread Basket Community Kitchen. This free community-wide lunch offers soup, bread, and pastries from 11:00 am to 1:00 pm in the Social Room. All are invited to join the community for lunch, and volunteers are always welcome! Contact Patsy Nelson for more information.
Campus Ministry – Wesley Foundation
Do you have a heart for students and sharing your faith? If so, there are opportunities to serve in Abba Java Coffeehouse, student small group activities, service and mission projects, providing food and meals, and more. Visit our website for details.
Centre Volunteers in Medicine
Centre Volunteers in Medicine (CVIM) provides medical and dental care, case management, and necessary medications at no cost to qualified uninsured and under-insured residents of Centre County. Local doctors, dentists, nurses, and other healthcare professionals volunteer their services at CVIM. In addition, CVIM depends upon volunteers to staff the office, interview patients, and assist with fundraising. Many St. Paul’s constituents support CVIM through gifts of their time, talent, and treasure. To learn more, visit the CVIM website.
St. Paul’s CORPS (Christian Organization for Repair Projects and Services) provides home repair services to people in our community with physical limitations and/or financial hardship. Past projects taken on by SPCORPS have ranged from simple (installing a mailbox) to complex (constructing a large room with bath in the Kay Street parsonage basement). Referrals and requests for assistance are coordinated through Renae Schunk, St. Paul's Director of Community and Congregational Care Ministries; social services agencies may also provide valid referrals. Those seeking assistance are asked to cover the cost of materials when financially able to do so. SPCORPS has more than 35 members. New volunteers are always welcome!
CROP Hunger Walk
Held every fall, this community-wide 5K walk raises awareness and funds for the fight against world hunger. Many St. Paul’s members participate as walkers. Monetary donations are also collected to support this initiative. For more information, visit the State College CROP Hunger Walk website.
St. Paul’s works directly with the State College Area Food Bank by holding food drives. Large donation bins are located at the Calder Way and College Avenue entrances to the church.
Good Samaritan Fund
St. Paul’s Good Samaritan Fund provides financial assistance to people in need when other community resources are not available or have been exhausted. Typical requests include help with utilities to prevent shut-off, assistance with rent to prevent eviction, and help with security deposits to secure housing. Requests for assistance are completely confidential and can be made in person, by phone, through referral by other agencies, and in collaboration with other service providers. Referrals and requests for assistance are coordinated through Renae Schunk, St. Paul's Director of Community and Congregational Care Ministries. Without the generous support of the congregation, the assistance St. Paul’s provides would not be possible. Donations can by directed through the offering plate by specifying “Good Sam Fund” in the memo line of your check or on your offering envelope.
Interfaith Human Services
Interfaith Human Services (IHS) provides financial assistance for basic needs to qualified Centre County residents. In addition, IHS operates a free furniture and appliance recycling program and manages the Centre County Fuel Bank. St. Paul’s was one of the founding sponsors of this mission. We continue to provide financial support, and many St. Paul’s members are active volunteers with the program. Visit the Interfaith Human Services website for more information.
Out of the Cold Centre County
St. Paul’s is one of several area churches coordinated by Out of the Cold Centre County to serve as an emergency overnight shelter when Centre House is full in the winter. Volunteers are needed to serve as hosts at check-in and as overnight supervisors. Monetary and food donations are also accepted. To learn more, contact Renae Schunk, St. Paul's Director of Community and Congregational Care Ministries.
Park Forest Preschool
The Park Forest Preschool is a free preschool for children two to five years old from low-income families who are not affiliated with Penn State or served by Head Start. Funded by local congregations, civic organizations, and private donations, the preschool sessions are held weekday mornings during the school year. St. Paul’s has been a strong supporter of Park Forest Preschool since its inception, and we continue to provide support by funding a scholarship for a child to attend and coordinating volunteers to drive the children to and from school each day.
Located in Room 203 of the Wesley Building, St. Paul’s Shoe Bank provides NEW shoes to children up to 18 years old whose parents or guardians receive public assistance. Founded in 1991, the Shoe Bank now provides approximately 500 pairs of new sneakers a year to children. The Shoe Bank is open from 9:00 am to noon on Saturdays. We have about 30 active volunteers, but are always happy to welcome more! Please contact Janice Becker for information.