Art For Your Home Program

Pictured is Phil Stapleton, a volunteer with Haven Ministries, with artwork being offered in Haven Ministries “Art For Your Home” Program at Hope Warehouse. The organization is providing free framed original artwork to its clients moving into permanent housing.

Art For Your Home Program

Haven Ministries is going one step farther in providing quality services to make housing homier for residents of Queen Anne’s County.  In a new program called “Art For Your Home,” the organization is providing free framed original artwork to its clients moving from homeless status to permanent housing.

The idea originated with Phil Stapleton, a volunteer with Haven Ministries who is coordinating the program.  He recalls, “Our residents finally scrape together money to get into permanent housing, but usually don’t have things on the wall that makes it look like a home. I saw a program like this happening in Arlington, VA, and thought we could do it in Queen Anne’s County.”

The artwork, which is donated by local artists, including artists from the Kent Island Federation of Art, includes photography, watercolors, paintings, and other two-dimensional work. Stapleton adds, “What struck me after talking with several artists, is that these artists have extra artwork they are more than willing to donate to this cause.”

Several pieces of artwork are on display at Haven Ministries Resource Center and Hope Warehouse, as well as in the Queen Anne’s County Department of Housing and Community Services.  Hope Warehouse will be the central location where residents can go to select artwork for their homes, but artwork will also be made available for the program at two upcoming events.

Local artist John Sharp of Centreville and friends are participating in an art exhibit to benefit Haven Ministries and highlight the Art For Your Home Program.  On Saturday, October 6 from 7 to 9 p.m., Sharp will be the featured artist in the opening of the art exhibit at Queen Anne’s County Centre for the Arts at 206 S. Commerce Street in Centreville. The art exhibit will be open about a month.

Sharp comments, “Everyone should be able to enjoy art.  That simple pleasure, perhaps evoking an emotion or a memory, should be available to all.  I believe the Art For Your Home Program is a great way to afford that opportunity to folks, who, at the moment have more pressing needs.  I am very appreciative to have Haven Ministries at our show and certainly hope that some of the artwork will brighten someone’s day.”

According to Michael Bell, Art Supervisor with Queen Anne’s County Public Schools, students in Queen Anne’s County will be creating artwork for the program, working with the Queen Anne’s County Centre for the Arts for a showing of the student-produced artwork in the spring and gaining service learning hours for their participation.

The Grand Opening of Haven Ministries Hope Warehouse will be held on October 4 from 5:30 to 7:30 p.m. Hope Warehouse is located behind the Queenstown Outlets at 6537 Friel’s Road in Queenstown.

For further information about the Art For Your Home Program, contact Phil Stapleton at 410-827-7232. For information about the Hope Warehouse, contact Susan Phillips at hopewarehouse@haven-ministries.com or call 410-490-8498, or visit haven-ministries.org.

Taking Care of the Shore’s Neighbors: It Just Takes a Heart

Taking Care of the Shore’s Neighbors: It Just Takes a Heart

Love shapes the ministry, love transforms people, and hope prevails at Haven Ministries.  Haven Ministries, a non-profit, faith-based organization is comprised of 14 local churches committed to making a difference, and providing hope through shelter, clothing, and food.  The organization operates on the premise of showing God’s love to the poor within the community by providing essential services.

Central to the organization’s mission is its seasonal Homeless Shelter located at the Kent Island United Methodist Church in Stevensville, open October through April for residents of Queen Anne’s County. The emergency, winter homeless shelter is open to men, women, and children.  Services include meals, clothing, case management services, and other life necessities. Haven Ministries served 27 guests at its designated space at Kent Island United Methodist Church at 2739 Cox Neck Road in Chester last season.

The Shelter was full or near capacity for much of the season last year and had occasion to turn away individuals due to full capacity conditions.  The organization has identified the need for a more permanent affordable Housing Assistance Program and has a short-term goal to find a home or property for its Housing Assistance Program, with a longer-term goal of acquiring or purchasing a home to accommodate its guests.  Krista Pettit, Executive Director of Haven Ministries comments, “The next step for many of our guests is for more long-term housing, until more permanent housing becomes available for them.”

Haven Ministries Resource Center, located at St. Paul’s Episcopal Church in Centreville, Monday through Friday, from 8:30 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. is often the first stop for those in need in Queen Anne’s County. Assistance is offered here in the way of financial counseling, job training, and wellness, as well as limited pastoral counseling and enrichment classes. The Resource Center’s classes are meeting the growing needs of the community, including everything from budget and financial workshops to empowerment workshops for recovering addicts. Financial support for these services is made possible from contributions from area churches to Haven Ministries Church Fund. According to Pettit, “There is something for everyone. We are also trying to connect with community organizations that might want to bring their clients to benefit from some of our classes, including recovery groups, social services organizations, health departments, schools and nonprofits.”

Other services offered by Haven Ministries include The Haven Ministries Food Pantries which are held on the third Friday monthly at Safe Harbor Presbyterian Church in Stevensville and at a second location at Centreville United Methodist Church at 608 Church Hill Road in Centreville from 5:30 to 7 p.m. The Pantries partner with the Maryland Food bank to provide a variety of healthy food choices every month.

Haven Ministries Our Daily Thread Thrift Store is open Monday through Saturday from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. at Safe Harbor Presbyterian Church in Stevensville, offering clothing and household goods at deeply discounted prices.

Haven Ministries has just opened a new warehouse, Hope Warehouse, offering used appliances, furniture and building supplies for purchase in Queenstown. The sales of items at a reduced cost to the public will support Haven Ministries other ministries in the community, including its street outreach. Hope Warehouse also provides a Retail Training Program that complements its Resource Center in Centreville, helping with job training and placement in the community for individuals trying to get back on their feet in the community. Hope Warehouse is open Thursday through Saturday, from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m.

Haven Ministries utilizes over 200 volunteers working, in a variety of roles, including the Homeless Shelter, Food Pantries, Thrift Store, Warehouse, and Resource Center.  Volunteers also help with Haven Ministries annual fundraisers like benefit concerts, Women’s Weekend, Tea, Girlfriend’s Weekend, Run 4 Shelter, Golf Tournament, and Wine and Windows events.  Haven Ministries Volunteer Coordinator Karen Bardwell coordinates and trains the volunteers. She also works with church coordinators from participating area churches seven days a week from October through April each year to staff each day’s Homeless Shelter schedule.

Pettit concludes, “Because of the financial contribution, time commitment, and donation of goods and services by members of our community, countless men, women, and children have received shelter, connections to jobs and skills training, transportation to important appointments, clothing for family members, street outreach services, and nourishment through food and spiritual care. God has been faithful through our efforts as we now have over 100 Friends and over 60 business partners. We hope in the coming year to move our ministry forward as we diligently seek to purchase property for a housing assistance program.  I am confident that HOPE will continue to prevail in our community.”