Volunteer Opportunity: CASA of Sacramento County

CASA of Sacramento County has contacted CVN with a great volunteer opportunity! CASA (Court Appointed Special Advocates) is looking for volunteers that are willing to make a difference in the lives of foster children.

A recent audit conducted by the US Department of Justice found that once a CASA volunteer is assigned, approximately 90% of CASA youth do not reenter the child welfare system. Can you imagine the difference that could be made if we were able to serve the other 2,500 children without CASAs?

-Riley Lakos, CASA Program Associate

In the foster care system, it is not unheard of for a child to have multiple professionals and multiple placements in the span of just a year. By becoming a CASA volunteer, you could be the one consistent, supportive adult that child needs.

In order to be a CASA volunteer, you must be at least 21 years of age and willing to commit to 18 months working with their youth. Sounds intimidating? Don’t worry! Volunteers come from all walks of life with all kinds of backgrounds. Male volunteers, those who are bilingual, and adults who are interested in working with older foster youth (14-21) are especially needed, but all are welcome.

This is a fantastic opportunity to speak for children that cannot speak for themselves and have a lasting effect on their lives!

Want to learn more?

CASA holds monthly program orientations! The next orientation is March 12th from 6-7pm. RSVP to Riley Lakos at 916.875.6460 or riley@sacramentocasa.org

Can’t make the March orientation? No problem! The next CASA training session does not start until June, so contact Riley at the phone number or email listed above to get more information on the April and/or May orientations.

Visit the CASA website for more information.

Can’t make the 18 month commitment?

No problem! Visit the CASA website or stay tuned with us for more information on the next CASA event which will have one-time volunteer opportunities.

Contact us for any questions.

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Sunset Park Apartments VBS

This past June, Church Volunteer Network partner church Lighthouse Ministries of Elk Grove hosted a week long Vacation Bible School program at Sunset Park Apartments in South Sacramento. Each evening from the 25th-29th Lighthouse Ministries provided a meal along with worship, a craft, games, and a Bible lesson for the children living in the complex. Lighthouse Ministries already has a monthly presence in the apartments, running a Saturday morning kids day on the third Saturday of each month, and once a year in June they go all out with this five-day program.

Volunteers from Lighthouse Ministries leading worship!

This year was a great success! A total of 85 children came through the VBS doors to experience the gospel and the love of Christ through this awesome church ministry. Over the week 7 children gave their lives to Christ for the very first time. From Lighthouse there were over 40 volunteers that came throughout the week to help make this event so successful.

Because Lighthouse Ministries has had such a consistent presence at the complex for the last seven years they have seen many of these children grow up and this year there was a need for a more teen-focused program. So this year Church Volunteer Network’s summer interns partnered with young adults from Lighthouse to start a simple teen discipleship program, a youth group. Through the week about 10 teenagers from the complex attended this intensive and relevant Bible study program. At the end of the week three of these teenagers gave their lives to Christ for the first time and Lighthouse plans on incorporating this teen youth group into their monthly Saturday programs.

It was an exciting week to watch God work through this wonderful church group and reach so many children in this South Sacramento community!

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Sabre City Community Outreach

Every second Saturday of the month, volunteers from Antelope Springs Church spend their afternoon loving the people of Sabre City Mobile Home Park. They set up a free community barbecue complete with games for the kids, and participate in visiting from door-to-door. This December, Antelope Springs delivered food baskets to the families of Sabre City who were in need. God does beautiful things when His people go out in love! Here is a story written by Becky Easter, the outreach leader, about what God did:

My friend Gail and I were the last to head out with three baskets to deliver. As we drove to our destinations, we were waved down by Vicki, a woman we’ve gotten to know well during the last few years. She said there was one more person who desperately needed a basket. She called him stubborn and prideful. He was working but hadn’t been paid in weeks, and he’d refused to take food from anyone and “didn’t even have a loaf of bread” in the kitchen.

Our three last baskets were committed. We weren’t sure what to do, and we were tired and ready to go home. We went ahead with our deliveries and then decided to swing by the churh to “raid” the food pantry. We pulled together a bag of miscellaneous cans of soup and vegetables, some pasta and stuffing, a box of pancake mix and syrup–it was really a weak excuse for a Christmas feast. We drove to his house with some trepidation. How would we be received by this stubborn man?

We considered leaving the bag on the doorstep, but as we pulled up we spotted Robert working in the garage. Like a bear, he came out, wary and challenging our presence. Who were we…what did we want…why were we there, he asked. Finally, I blurted, “We have groceries for you.” He bent over and nearly broke down, and thanks burst from his lips. He was so grateful for this bit of food that we had offered. We talked for a few minutes and then left him to his business, but we were all shaken by the experience.

Sure, the day had been full of joy and blessings. It’s always fun to give to people,  but with this final delivery it was as though God was saying, “Don’t be tired or half-hearted. This is important work. These are my people and I want you to provide for them.”

Thank you Antelope Springs for being faithful to God and His mission by loving the people of Sabre City!

For more information on how to get involved in this ministry contact Megan Meyer at mmeyer@churchvolunteernetwork.org.

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Winter Tarps & Tents Campaign!!

Every winter season, the homeless population in West Sacramento and all throughout the region face the elements head on. The lack of funding has resulted in shelter doors closing or not even opening for the harsh winter season.

Join CVN this year as we launch the first Winter Tarps & Tents Campaign for our homeless friends in West Sacramento!

We are looking for donations of new or gently used tarps & tents to give to our homeless friends who are unable to secure a bed in a shelter this winter season. Please make sure all used items are clean, without tears and all tents have all their components.

To donate items, please contact us via email at churchvolunteernetwork@gmail.com

If you are unable to donate items, but would like to make a monetary donation to purchase new tarps & tents, please use the PayPal button located to the right of this post. Please note that this is for Tarps & Tents.

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Jubliare Church seeing fruit from their outreach

Bible Lesson  by CVNSac
Bible Lesson , a photo by CVNSac on Flickr.

Almost two years ago, Assistant Pastor John Goover at Jubliare Evangelical Ministries in Natomas, was listening to a radio program about service, and was inspired to contact CVN about collaboration opportunities. After meeting with Dan Meyerpeter and Scott Thurmond, they targeted the Willow Glen Apartments on the corner of Del Paso Road and Richter Road as a good location to launch a monthly children’s out-reach.

With a core group of eight to ten people, and others from the church who support the out-reach financially, the fellowship at Jubliare are faithfully sharing God’s love with not only the children who live at Willow Glen, but also their families. This outreach is not only making an impact on the community at Willow Glen, but also at Jubliare.

“We’ve got four families from Willow Glen who are faithfully attending church,” says Pastor Ronnie Walton, Sr. “Not only are they there on Sunday mornings, but they are there through-out the week too for Wednesday night Bible study and other events.”

But the outreach has not just reached children and their families. During one of the outreaches, a group of people went door to door, inviting people down to join them at the basketball court and picnic area. They encountered a young man in his early 30’s who just moved into the complex. He joined them and shared a meal with the group of people who had assembled there. Because of the knock on his door, and his willingness to join them, relationships were formed and a life was changed.

“The church helped him to get some resources and he was able to turn his life around,” says Pastor Goover. “With the churches help, he was also able to get a scholarship and continue his education in Oklahoma.”

What seems to just about children, has proven to be so much more. A children’s outreach at an apartment community is just one way a church can partner with CVN to show God’s love to their community.

The group from Jubliare keeps it simple. A craft, fun, games, fellowship, a Bible lesson and a meal on a Saturday morning. This once a month offering has become a blessing to not only a community but to the church as well.

CVN currently partners with 30 churches in Children’s Outreach, Homeless Outreach and Convalescent Outreach opportunities as well as Food Distribution. In supporting these churches in their efforts to bring God’s love to their community, we are planting seeds that will grow to be blessing to their communities.

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Let’s Talk Turkey!

Thanksgiving will be here in a little less than two weeks and CVN has received a few requests to help complete some families Thanksgiving dinners.

Can you help us to add a little Thanksgiving cheer to the dinner tables of some families this season of thanks?

You can help by gifting CVN with a turkey or two… or a cash gift & we will buy the turkey!

To donate a turkey or two directly to CVN, contact Dan Meyepeter at 806.206.2400

To give a cash gift, you can send a check payable to CVN at the addresses below, or use the Pay Pal link on the left.

(When using Pay Pal, please note that this is for Thanksgiving Turkeys!)

Church Volunteer Network
2121 Natomas Crossing STE 200-238
Sacramento, CA 95834

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Starting Something New: Stonegate Apartment Outreach

On Saturday October 29th, Mission Church launched its very first outreach at Stonegate Apartments, a complex just down the street from where the church worships. Mission shared God’s Love by setting up a Harvest Carnival complete with a bounce house, pumpkin patch, cake walk, and about a dozen carnival games.

Mission Church's Stonegate Apartment Harvest Carnival

Many parents came with their children and everyone had a blast! Children quickly spread the word to their friends and soon kids were running up from everywhere to take part in the festivities.

Mission’s goal was to introduce themselves to the community and simply share the Love of jesus Christ with their neighbors. Mission hopes to continue a regular presence at Stonegate by launching a children’s program and adult discipleship event on a regular basis.

What encouraged me the most about Mission’s first outreach was the fact that there were about 20 volunteers who came out to serve, a large percentage of this small start-up church. It is very rare to see such a great percentage of a church body serving together on outreach. The DNA of Mission Church is a focus outward to the unsaved and unreached of their community. Mission Church truly believes that the church is not for them, but for God and for the lost.

Mission Church meets in the sanctuary of Hope Methodist Church on Sunday evenings at 6pm.
(8755 Center Parkway Sacramento, CA 95823)

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