In the 70s and 80s, the YWCA served the public as a safe haven from gang-controlled neighborhoods. Today, the association continues to dedicate itself to eliminating racism, empowering women and promoting peace, justice, freedom and dignity. However, the Garfield branch faced closure in August 2013. To save this vital community resource, Executive Director Lillie Moore created a plan to restore the facility. Volunteers play a critical role in seeing this vision come to fruition. Over the course of the next year, volunteers will replace the ceiling, furniture and plumbing as well as upgrade technology.
MLK National Day of Service energized the renovation effort. Church of God and local volunteers partnered together to brighten the inside of the facility with coats of paint. Members surprised Cait Edwards, Jersey Cares corporate services manager, with their enthusiasm. She commented, “You are all trying your best and work so thoroughly!” The members began painting at 9 a.m. and cleaned up by 11:30 a.m.—earlier than expected.
To conclude the event, the Church of God volunteers shared the message of “We love you!” with all in attendance. “I feel the spirit of love and this fueled my fire to continue going,” said Lillie.
The Church of God members gave thanks to Heavenly Mother for inspiring the love and unity felt during the day’s events.