Dr. Scott Morris, a family practice physician and ordained United Methodist minister, founded Church Health in 1987 to provide quality, affordable healthcare for working, uninsured people and their families. Thanks to a broad base of financial support from the faith community, and the volunteer help of doctors, nurses, dentists, and others, the Church Health Clinic has grown to become the largest faith-based healthcare organization of its type in the United States. Currently, the clinic cares for patients without relying on government funding. Fees are charged on a sliding scale based on income. The average visit costs about $25. Church Health believes we have a responsibility to take care of the bodies God gave us, so it is committed to health education and prevention. Its wellness ministry offers everything from personalized exercise plans and cooking classes to group exercise classes and activities for children and teens. Church Health Wellness is open to the entire community, with fees charged on a sliding scale based on family size and income. Church Health also provides the support, consultation, and education to start or strengthen health ministries in congregations. Since 1988, Congregational Health Promoters have been trained to be health leaders within their congregations. Faith Community Outreach also develops faith-health curriculum for congregations and collaborates with faith communities in other ways as well. The MEMPHIS Plan is Church Health’s employer-sponsored healthcare plan for small business and the self-employed. By relying on donated services from volunteer doctors and area hospitals and laboratories, the MEMPHIS Plan offers uninsured people in lower-wage jobs access to quality, affordable healthcare and promotes healthy bodies and spirits for all. There are volunteer opportunities for healthcare professionals, gardeners, anyone who would like to do light office work, and more. Please contact Church Health for volunteer opportunities.
The Emmanuel Center serves people through programs that inspire spiritual, physical, and educational growth. The center provides recreational activities and continued learning and developing programs that include spiritual direction, social service programs, educational enrichment, and organized sports. The center started in 1989, when the Rev. Colenzo J. Hubbard and his late wife Debra were called to minister in South Memphis, one of the poorest neighborhoods in the USA. Father Hubbard’s background in administrative organization, coupled with his dedication in creating new opportunities to offer the word of the Lord, became the backbone of this ministry. The primary focus of this ministry has been, and continues to be, to assist children and adults in the public housing developments and surrounding community in the areas of evangelism, education, social services, community relations and sports. The center was born as Emmanuel Episcopal Center, an outreach of the Episcopal Diocese of West Tennessee for its first 24 years. In 2004, Charles Gerber along with Father Hubbard and Debra became founding board members of Promise Academy Charter School. Promise Academy now has two locations, oneat the old Hollywood Elementary School in North Memphis, and the other at Spring Hill Elementary in Raleigh. The Emmanuel Center conducts the after school activities at both Promise Academy locations, as well as at the center location on St. Paul Avenue. In 2013,the center branched out from the Episcopal Diocese of West Tennessee and was renamed the Emmanuel Center. The center’s long-standing mission, however, remains the same—breaking the cycle of poverty through education and strengthening young minds, bodies and spirits within a context of Christian witness. The center has forged a partnership with Memphis Leadership Foundation, which provides administrative and human resources support. Saint Andrew’s participates in Operation Backpack each summer, which provides school supplies, backpacks, and school clothing for the children at Emmanuel Center.
The mission of The Metropolitan Inter-Faith Association (MIFA) is to support the independence of vulnerable seniors and families in crisis through high-impact programs. MIFA was founded in 1968 to find a solution for poverty and racial division in Memphis. In a cooperative effort by church leaders and laypersons, the seed was planted for an organization that would thrive. Early in 1968, Rabbi James Wax and the Memphis Ministers Association submitted “An Appeal to Conscience” to The Commercial Appeal, the predominant daily newspaper of Memphis and its surrounding metropolitan area. In February of that year, the sanitation workers’ strike began, highlighting the injustices of low wages and poor working conditions. When Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. was assassinated on a trip to Memphis to address the strike, the fury, grief and mistrust that followed widened the chasm between the races. Following Dr. King’s death, area churches intent on healing the city’s wounds realized they would have to come together to accomplish anything. In September 1968, MIFA was born. The following year, the organization hired Methodist minister Berkeley Poole as its first executive director. After Poole resigned in 1971, Gid Smith and Bob Dempsey were hired as co-executive directors. Smith and Dempsey transformed MIFA into an organization focused on direct action. MIFA’s long-standing relationship with volunteers began when its first VISTA (Volunteers in Service to America) contract was awarded in 1974. When MIFA began consistently securing grants, it had everything it needed to flourish: organized administrators, a dedicated workforce, sufficient funding and a growing success rate. Saint Andrew’s delivers MIFA meals on the fifth Friday. Please contact Barbara Jones for more information.
Methodist Hospice Care
Since 1979, Methodist Hospice care has been provided in Memphis by an interdisciplinary team of doctors, nurses, social workers, chaplains, home health aides and volunteers. Patients may continue to see their own physician while receiving hospice care. The Methodist Hospice team will work with the physician on an individualized plan of care for the patient. When a cure is not possible and you and your family decide comfort and quality of life are most important, the Methodist Hospice team is available to provide hospice care. Hospice is available for adults or children whose life expectancy is six months or less. Should you experience a change in prognosis, however, other options remain available to you. Hospice services include pain control and symptom management, including home medical equipment; physical, speech and occupational therapy; admission to the hospital if acute symptoms require a short hospital stay; volunteers to help run errands, sit with you for short periods, and, at times, provide transportation; and, inpatient, residential or respite care at Methodist Hospice Residence. A place like home for those with a short time to live, Methodist Hospice Residence is a site for families and friends to share in the last days of a loved one’s life. The hospice team also supports your family during this time by providing caregiver education, so your family and other caregivers can care for you; personal attention that emphasizes your role in making decisions; support groups and counseling, even after hospice care ends; bereavement consultations and services to anyone in the greater Memphis region; and, Camp BraveHearts, a family camp for those who have experienced the death of a loved one.
Neighborhood Christian Centers, Inc.
The primary mission of the Neighborhood Christian Centers, Inc. is to build stronger families and neighborhoods by providing compassionate, Christ-centered ministries to those in need. Though Neighborhood Christian Centers, Inc. was established in 1978, the ministry actually began years earlier. Dr. JoeAnn Ballard was born in rural Mississippi to a poverty-ridden family. When she was three months old, her parents separated and she was placed in the home of a great aunt and uncle. Though this home was also financially poor, it was filled with love. Through the years, her foster father lovingly raised over 45 foster children. After graduating from college in West Virginia, JoeAnn moved to Memphis to take her first job, in which she re-opened the doors of a church by starting a Sunday school program. After a short time in Memphis, JoeAnn married Monroe Ballard, a young schoolteacher. Together, they began a personal ministry to young people. What started with bringing needy children into their home over weekends turned into a full-time ministry. The Ballard’s home was often filled to capacity. In order to accommodate so many children, they turned their two-bedroom home into a nine-bedroom home and worked various jobs to pay expenses. Since 1968, the Ballards have been foster parents to 75 children, all of them living with JoeAnn, Monroe, and their four children for at least a year. In 1979, local churches and agencies saw the need for an urban neighborhood center and chose JoeAnn to be at the helm of Neighborhood Christian Centers, Inc. (NCC), which has grown exponentially, offering programs and services in almost every Memphis zip code. The people who walk through the doors of NCC are distrustful of the government system and frustrated by the red tape of agencies. They are frequently unemployed but often don’t know how to fill out a job application or dress for a job interview. Their children are dropping out of school and falling by the wayside. In the midst of what seems hopeless to many, NCC shines a light of hope, striving to break the cycle of poverty and dependence. To those in need, NCC has come to be identified as a source of hope; to donors and volunteers, the organization has built a solid reputation as an established and effective means to respond to the needs of the poor.
Mid-South Food Bank
Mid-South Food Bank serves children by distributing food through its partner agencies, and through two child hunger programs – Kids Cafe and the Food for Kids BackPack Program. The Kids Cafes provide nutritious meals twice a week in a safe environment, where children are served by volunteers and have an opportunity to learn the importance of nutritious eating. The Food for Kids BackPack Program provides a backpack filled with nutritious, child-friendly food for children to take home for the weekend. Each backpack contains six complete meals and some fun, nutrition information activities. The majority of food recipients are reached through Hunger’s Hope and the Mobile Pantry. Hunger’s Hope distributes food and other groceries through a network of partner agencies, which include food pantries, soup kitchens, shelters, youth programs, senior programs, rehabilitation and residential centers. The Mobile Pantry provides direct delivery of fresh produce, frozen meat and other perishable foods on a regular basis to designated, underserved communities. Through its Senior Nutrition Program, Mid-South Food Bank distributes food specifically to seniors. Each Senior Grocery food box contains food for a senior to prepare and consume at home. There is enough food to supplement their diets for about one month in each box.
Forever Young Senior Wish Organization
In 2006, Diane Hight saw a story in the news of an elderly woman riding in a race car. Having that experience had always been this woman’s dream. Her wish was fulfilled by Never Too Late, a senior wish organization in Indiana. “Instantly, I knew this was what I wanted to do. I’ve had a passion for senior citizens my entire life,” said Hight. Forever Young Senior Wish Organization came to life in Memphis with the guidance of Never Too Late President Bob Haverstick. The name Forever Young speaks for itself; no matter the age, a person always feels young at heart. Forever Young works to change the image of aging and redefine it with self-confidence, respect, and a hopeful life for seniors. “For surely I know the plans I have for you, says the Lord, plans for your welfare and not for harm, to give you a future with hope” (Jeremiah 29:11). This verse from Scripture has become the foundation for the organization’s mission. In 2009, Forever Young found a huge need in the senior adult community. Many World War II veterans had not seen that National WWII Memorial in Washington D.C. That’s when the mission of the organization changed to honoring senior veterans. Hundreds of World War II and Korean War veterans have now been honored through trips to Washington D.C., Normandy, and Pearl Harbor. An organization that was birthed out of a news story is now making news on its own. Forever Young Senior Wish is a 501(c)3 non-profit organization. All donations are tax-deductible.
St. Columba Episcopal Conference & Retreat Center
St. Columba Conference and Retreat Center, a community outreach ministry of The Episcopal Diocese of West Tennessee, is a 145-acre wooded center that hosts business retreats, church functions, arts guilds, and various events. The setting is secluded and peaceful, and yet less than twenty minutes from the heart of Memphis. St. Columba is also home to Memphis’s famous Mud Camp, serving rising 1st-6th graders for memorable day camp experiences each summer. Ownership of the acres that make up St. Columba dates back to the Shivers family, who moved from North Carolina in the 1800s. After the tragic death of their infant children in the 1850s, the Shivers moved to California and sold the land to the Scheibler family. Dr. James Scheibler and his wife used the property as a second home. Like many other German families who lived in Memphis, the veterinarian and his wife survived Yellow Fever epidemics because they came to stay at their summer home outside the city. Dr. Scheibler was responsible for starting Shelby County’s first public health department. The Scheiblers were members of The Episcopal Church. They were instrumental in building St. Elisabeth’s Episcopal Church in its original Raleigh location and remained members of that parish until their deaths. The Scheibler’s children, Jim and Beatrice, grew up cherishing the land. Jim never married and lived on the St. Columba property all his life. Beatrice married into the Gerber’s Department Store family and moved away. But, after her husband was killed in an unsolved homicide in Mississippi, she moved back to the property to live with her brother. Jim Scheibler and Beatrice Scheibler Gerber bequeathed the property to The Diocese of Tennessee. The land was organized as the conference center in 1971 by the Rt. Rev. W. Fred Gates, Jr. Bishop Gates named the center after Columba, who founded a monastery on the Scottish isle of Iona that became a haven for spiritual renewal and refreshment. Bishop Gates envisioned St. Columba as “a refuge for reflection and prayer…a place where modern-day Christians can renew their spirit and faith and go forth with new zeal for ministry.” Today, the common vision of the Scheibler family and The Diocese of West Tennessee for a place of renewal is thriving. St. Columba Conference and Retreat Center is a nonprofit, 501(c)(3) organization supported by the Diocese of West Tennessee and individual donors.
Good Samaritan Church and Outreach Ministries
The Rev. Norman Redwing has had a long relationship with our rector pre-dating his arrival at St. Andrews. At that time, Norman was an inner-city youth minister and St. Andrews provided opportunities for VBS and social experiences for these children. An annual dinner around Thanksgiving provided a chance to pray and eat together. We have also funded Thanksgiving and Christmas for many families. Over the years this partnership blossomed into close relationships. In recent times, Norman was ordained and we have helped fund this church as well as provide needed financial resources to the people whom he serves. As this ministry continues to grow and shift, we look forward to new opportunities to work together as members of the one church of Jesus Christ.
Palmer Home for Children
Palmer Home provides superior care for children while introducing the love of God through service to each individual child. Palmer Home ensures restorative environments where children feel safe, connected and supported. Whether on campus or off, each child served by Palmer Home has a safe place to call home with trustworthy, supportive adults to guide them as they grow and develop into all that God created them to be. Palmer Home provides holistic care to each child based on their unique physical, emotional, spiritual and educational needs. The residential campus for children provides a Christ-centered family atmosphere where children feel safe, connected to trustworthy adults, and supported as they grow and develop. Each child is placed with a caregiver couple in one of six on-campus homes. The foster care program allows children the opportunity to experience the support and connection of a family while in the care of Palmer Home. We provide private foster care through Palmer Home certified families. The Jonah’s Journey ministry provides nurturing care for the infants of mothers in prison. Additionally, support is provided to mothers in prison and after release. With reunification as the ultimate goal, the certified foster families work to cultivate the bond between the mother and child in their care. The transitional program provides continued guidance and coaching for children between the ages of 18 – 24. The goal is to prepare each child for independence through career and vocational development, as well as other life skills to succeed as young adults.
Thistle and Bee
Thistle and Bee helps women survive prostitution and trafficking by offering hope and healing through a holistic residential and therapeutic clinical program and employment in their social enterprise. Thistle & Bee provides each woman services based on her needs. The clinical program is two years, with aftercare available upon completion. The social enterprise offers up to 18 months of employment in a supportive environment, with the potential for employment and mentoring roles beyond that. The women in the Thistle & Bee program are breaking the cycle of poverty and multi-system failure that has brought us to a place where sex trafficking and prostitution are at an unprecedented high. Successful graduates of the Thistle & Bee program who are interested in working with us after graduation will help the residents that follow them. The model works. Today the women served by Thistle and Bee are helping care for 53 bee hives. They are baking granola, harvesting and bottling honey, and making other products to supply over a dozen retail outlets, farmers markets, and other venues. They are earning an income as they acquire a host of skills—from process mapping and inventory control to stress management and customer service. This social enterprise generates revenue to support programs designed to help women on a journey of healing and hope. The journey requires grit, courage, and a refusal to settle. Yes, Thistle and Bee is a business with a conscience. But we’re more than that. We are a community where dreams are born and lives are changed.