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Sun, Aug. 18

Village residents lead the way in proactive disaster response with Crisis Care Kits

“I’ve never been part of a more caring, generous, volunteering community,” said Jim Cunningham, pastor of the Village Church of the Nazarene. “Having lived in seven states and moved almost 50 times, that says a lot.”

He’s referring to the way the Village of Oak Creek residents take care of one another and those outside of the Village. “I constantly brag on my community to others, about their level of engagement with so many different programs and events designed to help those in need.”

Crisis Care Kits have become one of the biggest charitable opportunities of the year here in the VOC. For the past six years the Nazarene Church has facilitated the bulk purchase and packing of much needed hygiene products to be sent to disaster victims.

The Crisis Care Kit items are bagged and shipped in May, arriving in time to help people during the summer/fall disaster season. Recipients aren’t qualified by religion, nationality, economic status, race, or any other criteria...only need.

“Imagine losing everything. Your home and its contents were just destroyed in an earthquake or a forest fire, mudslide, hurricane, tornado, civil war, etc. You have nothing except the clothes you’re wearing and you are put in a refugee camp, a school gym, some space you are sharing with hundreds, maybe thousands of others. Then someone looks you in the eye, smiles and hands you a bag filled with toothbrushes, toothpaste, soap, shampoo, a comb, nail clippers, bandaids, facial tissue, hand towels...even a stuffed animal,” says Pastor Jim. “To us, that may not seem like much. But to a person in those circumstances it can mean the world. It brings hope. It tells them their situation matters, that others are there for them, are thinking of them, care about them, are reaching out to help them.”

Last year over 2,000 Crisis Care Kits, at a cost of over $16,000, were packed and shipped from the Village of Oak Creek. Almost 100 people assisted with unpacking and staging the more than 36,000 items that went into those CCK’s, and then packing the Kits and boxing them. Several of those people requested they be contacted when the next packing event took place. And that time is now.

Supplies will be arriving throughout April. Crews are needed to unbox and stage all of the items on May 6th – 10th, 9am-1pm. The Crisis Care Kits are bagged and boxed Saturday, May 11th, 8:30am – 12:30pm. A free lunch will be served when the packing is completed. It takes far more hours to do the unpacking and staging than to pack the Kits.

To volunteer, please contact Pastor Jim at pastorjim@vocnaz.org or call 928-284-0015 and leave a message.

At local prices, filling a CCK will cost you around $15-$18 (plus $2 for shipping). VocNaz places bulk orders for supplies. Last year they were able to bring the cost down to $6.25 per CCK (plus $2 for shipping).

You can contribute for Crisis Care Kits by mailing a check to VocNaz, 55 Rojo Dr., Sedona, AZ 86351.

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