Gap Ministries Closets are resources churches have to help fill the gaps in people’s lives in the community.
Executive Director at One Body Collaboratives Mary Cacioppi says, “our Gap Ministries really serve about 500 families in need and in crisis on an annual basis.”
On Saturday, twelve churches having Gap Ministries Closets came together for the 2nd annual Day of Compassion. Each of them setting up tables topped with items the church gives to those in need.
“So we understand the person’s life situation and then we’re able to connect them with resources that can help them with the crisis that they’re having that day,” says Cacioppi.
The variety of needs filled by the different churches is displayed on their tables, some with onesies diapers and formula, others stocked with paper supplies, and tables of soaps and personal hygiene products.
“Whether it’s food supplies, baby products, paper products, or household items we’re able to direct individuals to these Gap Ministries to get those items that they need,”said Cacioppi.
However, because of the high volume of need, churches have had trouble keeping their closets stocked.
Cacioppi says, “they had continually been depleted of all of the resources they are providing to
“We always need the resources, as soon as blankets come in the blankets go out,” adds Deon Fresco. Each of the twelve churches fills which ever needs are asked for in their communities. Deon Fresco from Redeemer Lutheran says bedding is their specialty. “There’s such a need for many displaced people to have bedding,” says Fresco. “Our church has decided to take six recipients a month and we give hundreds of items away to those six recipients.”
Volunteer Alice Hale says people come to Heartland Church for more personal items.
“All the time people come in and say ‘I need underwear’ and it’s a big need in the community,”said Hale.
Despite the churches’ limited supplies, those involved with gap ministries closets are passionate about making a positive impact. “I really believe in what they’re doing,” said Hale. “They’re doing such an amazing thing for the community of Rockford and I’m so blessed to be a part of it.”
“We want to give a gift of love to our, our recipients,” said Fresco.
Donations can be made to any of the twelve participating churches.