We love you, Joyce.

Christmas shopping is complete and gifts have been delivered to our 20 Backpack Kids. We hope that each child enjoyed the toys and clothing that were purchased for them. Many thanks to every volunteer that shopped and wrapped each gift. Our Backpack program could not function without our dedicated volunteers.

As you all know we lost our precious Joyce Mills on December 20th. Joyce started the Backpack Ministry at Beckley First Baptist about seven years ago. She inspired members of our church to volunteer time to shop for food, pack backpacks and deliver the backpacks to needy children at Beckley Elementary School. We will miss her serving spirit in our church and we will carry on her mission. Our loss is heavens gain.

Thanks to each of you that have given time, money or donated food to our Backpack Ministry. May God bless you!

For the month of January please bring Vienna Sausages.

There is Shopping to be Done!

Christmas is just a few weeks away and there is shopping to be done! We will be purchasing Christmas gifts for our Backpack Kids again this year.

Each year we receive a wish list for every child. This list shows us the first name of the child, age, grade and gender. Each child’s wish list is different. Usually they request some clothing items and show the sizes they need. Always there are toys and games of some sort that they want. Of course we can’t purchase everything they request but if you shop around you can find bargains. It is really a lot of fun to do!

After we make our purchases we wrap each one and add name tags. We then put each child’s gifts in a large garbage bag with the child’s wish list attached. All the gifts are brought back to the church.

We deliver all the gifts to Beckley Elementary. Just before Christmas break the parents or guardians of each child will pick the gifts up to take home.

If you would like to shop for one or more of our Backpack Kids please let me know. You will be given a child’s wish list and an envelope with the money to do your shopping. We will have $100.00 to spend for each child due to a very generous donation by an anonymous benefactor. Thank God for this wonderful and kind person. May God bless them!

Thanks to everyone who has donated food, money or prayers for our Backpack Kids. We so appreciate everything you do.

For the month of December please bring cans of beans and franks.

What a Blessing for our Backpack Kids!

Our Backpack Ministry has been very blessed to receive an anonymous donation of over $1,000 to be used to purchase food as well as Christmas gifts for each of our Backpack Kids. Thank God for the giving spirit of our donor. May God bless you!

We continue to pack two breakfasts, two lunches, two dinners, a bag of snacks as well as a fresh loaf of bread every week for every Backpack Kid. Thanks to everyone who has brought food, given money or has prayed for these children. Please continue to be in prayer for our Backpack Ministry.

For the month of November please bring hot cocoa mix packets.

Backpack Ministry – October

by Helen Greene

Backpacking is going full speed ahead! Every Wednesday morning we are packing food for our “Backpack Kids” at Beckley Elementary School.

Thanks to each one of you who brings food, gives money or prays for our kids and this ministry.

For the month of October please bring small cans of chicken noodle soup for our kids.

It’s back to school!

Well it is back to school for our Backpack Kids. We have already started packing food for them to take home every weekend. As you may know, we pack two breakfasts, two lunches, two dinners, a loaf of bread and a bag of snacks for every child.

Please be in prayer for these children and for our Backpack Ministry. Thanks to everyone who prays for this ministry. Also, thanks to everyone who donates food or money. May God bless you!

For the month of September please bring small cans of tomato or chicken noodle soup.

Shopping, shopping and more shopping

by Helen Greene

Shopping, shopping and more shopping. That is what we are doing during the summer months to replenish our backpack pantry. Lots of canned meat, veggies and fruit are needed to fill the backpacks of our Backpack Kids.

We will need lots of volunteers to help with this project. If you are interested in helping please see me and I am sure I can find you a job! Thanks to everyone who has given food, money or prayers for this ministry. May God bless you!

For the summer months please continue to bring applesauce cups for our kids.

School is Finally Over

School is finally over for this term. At the end of this year we were serving 26 children. We  pray they will have adequate food this summer. Our Backpack Ministry could not function without our reliable volunteers. Each one has played a valuable part in this ministry. If you are wondering who they are here is a list: Jeff Oakland, Darrel Yurkovich, Ken & Margaret Dilley, Richard and Janice Wood, Charlotte Hutchens, Connie Neal, Nancy Moran, Debbie Quinn, Dave & Linda Allport, Nancy Hall, Mike & Patty Atterson, Linda Ramsey, Mary Stover, Debbie Vanaman, Gordon & Mary Gregory, Johnny, Helen & Tim Greene. Thanks to each one of you! Please continue to pray for our Backpack Kids.

.For the month of June please bring individual applesauce cups.

Only One More Month of School

There is only one more month of school left for this year. I am sure all the children will be happy to have a summer break. We all need to be praying that the Backpack Kids will have adequate food during the summer.

During the school break our Backpack Ministry volunteers will be shopping for food to restock our food closet. We rely on the Mountaineer Food Bank for some of our food and find bargains at local stores. We also rely on your donations of food and cash to keep our ministry going. Thanks to each of you for your contributions and prayers.

For the month of May, please bring pudding cups.

Thank you, Beckley Area Foundation

Several people had mentioned to me that we could apply for a Grant from The Beckley Area Foundation to provide money to help purchase food for our Backpack Ministry. Last September Debbie Vanaman and I attended an informational meeting at the BAF office to learn the requirements for applying. With help from Debbie I applied for an $800.00 Grant.

In March I was notified we will indeed receive $800.00 from The Beckley Area Foundation. What a wonderful blessing! Many thanks to The Beckley Area Foundation for your kind gift. It will go a long way in helping buy food for our Backpack Kids.

We are currently packing food weekly for 23 children at Beckley Elementary School. Each backpack includes two breakfasts, two lunches, two dinners, a loaf of fresh bread and a bag of snacks.

Please continue to pray for our Backpack Ministry and the children it serves. Thanks to everyone for your prayers and contributions.

For the month of April please bring cans of corn, peas or carrots.

Hurry Up Spring!

by Helen Greene

Hurry up Spring! Most of us are thinking this phrase. I am sure our Backpack Kids are as anxious as we are for warmer weather.   In about three months school will be out. We have had a successful year and have provided food for 22 children every week. Our volunteers have been doing a great job.

Please continue to pray for our Backpack Kids to have full tummies and happy lives.  For the month of March please bring canned soup for our backpacks. Any flavor will be fine.  May God bless each one of you who has helped this ministry in any way.