The M25 Initiative Gives $13,500 to Area Churches and Nonprofits

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M25 Board Members with Roger Kohnke of Christ Evangelical Lutheran Church

M25 Board Members with Roger Kohnke of Christ Evangelical Lutheran Church. Photo courtesy of The M25 Initiative.

BRIDGETON, N.J.—Dr. Robin Weinstein, president, and founder of The M25 Initiative, has announced that the nonprofit recently awarded approximately $13,500 in funding to 16 area churches and nonprofits to aid in the grassroots efforts to combat hunger, poverty, and homelessness.

The M25 Initiative Mustard Seed Mini-Grant Program provides seed funding through matching grants for innovative start-up and on-going projects of faith-based organizations and collaborations in Cumberland County,  that further the spirit & mission of the Cumberland County Code Blue program.
“The funding that we distributed is matched with the applying organization’s commitment through their monetary and volunteer support to help the struggling and vulnerable in our area,” said Weinstein. “Our churches and non-profit partners are on the front line of fighting the effects of poverty year-round and the Mustard Seed Mini-Grant Program is our way to further the spirit of the Code Blue Program by equipping and empowering grassroots efforts to help our neighbors.”

The M25 Initiative Mustard Seed Mini-Grant Program aims to equip local congregations and faith-based organizations with financial resources to address issues in Cumberland County related to the primary objectives of the organization.

Last year, the M25 Initiative disbursed approximately $15,000 in funding to area churches and non-profits. Because of last year’s grant funding, the following results were reported by the partners:

  • Over 7,000 clients served at food pantries and clothing closets.
  • Over 24,000 meals distributed.

Additionally, the Society of St. Vincent de Paul in Vineland reported utilizing funds to transition three individuals from the streets to a home. The ages of the individuals were 21, 41, and 73.

“With the M25 Mustard Seed Grant funding, matched by our Society of St. Vincent de Paul, Conference at Christ the Good Shepherd Parish in Vineland, three individuals are no longer homeless,” says Susan Stephens of the Society of St. Vincent de Paul.

The funding raised by the M25 Initiative goes right back into the community needs.

The M25 Board approved allocation of funding for the 2017-2018 to the following organizations: Bethany Grace Community Church, Christ Evangelical Lutheran, Cornerstone Community Church, Full Gospel Assembly of God, Help & Hope Ministries, Society of St. Vincent de Paul in Bridgeton, St. John's First Evangelical Lutheran, St. Paul's Lutheran, St. Paul's Missionary Baptist, Vineland Rotary Club Charities, Vineland Salvation Army, Parish of the Holy Cross, and Bethany 7th Day Adventist.

Projects included food pantries, feeding programs, as well as showers for the homeless and clothing closets.

Additionally, a donation was sent to churches that hosted a Code Blue warming center, but who did not apply for a grant, which included: First Presbyterian Church in Vineland, St. Andrew’s Episcopal Church in Bridgeton, and Trinity United Methodist Church in Millville.

“The funding raised by the M25 Initiative goes right back into the community needs,” said Weinstein. “We are volunteer operated and it allows much of our funds to be directly used for the purposes of helping other help the least of these in our community. It is our goal to help alleviate some of the financial burdens of our county’s amazing army of compassion that are battling the effects of poverty and hopelessness.”

“The three pillars of the M25 Initiative are: the Cumberland County Code Blue Coalition, the Cumberland County Housing First Collaborative, and the Mustard-Seed Grants. Together, these three programs provide a safety net of compassion by equipping and empowering individuals, churches, and organizations in being the hands and feet of Jesus in our community,” concluded Weinstein.
The M25 Initiative is a 501c3 non-profit in Cumberland County, created for the sole purpose of engaging, equipping, empowering, and mobilizing the local church and faith-based organizations to engage in innovative and cooperative solutions to alleviate suffering, feed the hungry, end poverty, reduce crime, revitalize a spirited community and transform lives.

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