1. Bread Giveaway
Everybody likes bread! Especially from those high-end bread stores with Bread Company somewhere in the name… Did you know that you can arrange to receive day-old bread from specialty bread stores for FREE? You can also check with national chain grocery stores that have in-house bakeries. Talk to the store manager and explain your outreach concept. Tell a few stories of the people you are helping and you will likely establish your “daily bread” connection. It will only take one or two of these connections to begin a substantial ministry in your community.
Many of these stores do not have a reliable source to distribute their old bread to. The key is to be consistent and reliable in picking up their bread. You will need to have a team and as schedule so you don’t disappoint the bread store managers. As a good public relations gesture, write a letter of thanks to the store manager for his company’s generosity to the community (and don’t be surprised to see it framed and posted on the wall of the store).
The ministry is simple and straight forward. Knock on the doors of the houses and apartments. Say, “Hi, we’re giving away fresh, free high-quality bread. Could you use some, or do you know anyone in the neighborhood who could use some?” Give recipients an outreach card and offer to pray for them as you hand out the bread.
How Do You Find People To Give Bread To?
Cold calling (just knocking on doors) in lower-income neighborhoods and apartments complexes works fine with this project. Stay away from neighborhoods closest to the donating store.
What You’ll Need
2. Big Christmas Party
People in need don’t always celebrate Christmas properly because there aren’t Christ-centered celebration opportunities. You can sponsor an event that will be fun and cause everyone to focus on Jesus.
The elements of this celebration include playing games and singing songs. As you sing Christmas carols, make sure the words are available. It’s also fun to have a few inexpensive rhythm instruments to play along with.
Someone can share what Christmas is about in a very positive and upbeat way – simply explaining, “Christmas is important to me because…”
Decorations and refreshments and a meal can be simple or elaborate, depending on the inclination of your group.
For about $1 per photo, you can take Polaroid pictures of kids with an ethnically correct Santa. Design a simple backdrop and get up-close with the camera. Mount the photo on red or green construction paper and add the child’s name and year with a gold or silver marking pen.
At the conclusion of the party, give away small gifts as people depart – perhaps a Bible or devotional book. Consider giving away the decorations as well.
How Do You Find People Who Would Enjoy A Christmas Party?
Invite those who are already connected with your ministry to those in need. Give out fliers or invitations at previous events in the neighborhood, or simply walk around the neighborhood and distribute fliers.
What You’ll Need:
- facility to host the party
- Polaroid camera and film
- construction paper
- glue sticks
- gold and silver marking pens
- outreach cards
3. Winter Survival Kits
Winter can be hard on the body and the soul. A survival kit is great encouragement to everyone who receives one.
The kit contains a packet of facial tissue, lip balm, throat lozenges, and an outreach card.
Our churches have had great success with this project as we have aimed it at parents and business professionals. We go to parks that parents frequent with their children and downtown sidewalks as business professionals make their way out to lunch. When those we meet notice how nice the kit is, they are very grateful and usually end up striking a conversation with us.
Where To Go
- sporting events
- shopping centers
What You’ll Need
- zip lock plastic bags
- lip balm
- throat lozenges
- individual packets of facial tissue
- outreach cards
Why Outreach Cards
When doing a project, it is important to have a means to connect with those you serve. An outreach card is a business-sized card you can leave with those you have served so they can get back in touch you if they desire. The idea isn’t to accomplish a sales job where you promote your church. Rather, it is a simple way to leave your church’s name, address, phone number and service times so that when future needs arise, those you’ve served will have a way of reconnecting with you. The idea is to be available without giving out personal addresses.
If you need outreach cards for your holiday projects, we highly recommend those on our sister site at KindnessResources.com.