A forward-thinking non-profit, AGAPE consistently reviews client needs and its methods for meeting them.
For example, AGAPE recently consolidated its two locations into one countywide site, allowing them to serve clients more efficiently and to even increase services while decreasing costs. “In ever-challenging financial times, being good stewards of the dollar is incredibly important,” notes Executive Director Michelle Bernth. “We believe that this change allows us to make the best use of the money given to us by our funders and donors.”
In addition, AGAPE offers emergency food services, case management, connections to job training, search and readiness assistance, daycare assistance, utilities assistance (as funds allow), and access to clothing, personal care and household items. AGAPE also helps provide school supplies to children in need and special meals for Thanksgiving and Christmas. It hosts an “adopt-a-family” Christmas program for local families and addresses emotional needs by providing birthday boxes for children that include a gift, cake and decorations.
AGAPE seeks to give people a hand up, not just a hand out. To that end, they are working toward measuring meaningful outcomes. They have created a new program, FAST (Families Achieving Self-Sufficiency Today), to help families break out of poverty and get on the path to self-sufficiency by not only meeting their immediate needs, but also identifying long-term help they will need to regain their footing.
“It goes a long way to remember that our clients are people, just like us, who happen to be going through a hard time,” Bernth explains. “We treat every client with dignity and respect and approach every situation on an individual basis. Our volunteers are wonderful and they are committed to providing caring assistance to our clients. We could not do what we do without our volunteers!”
AGAPE receives a variety of products from the Foodbank, including USDA commodities and twice-monthly retail product deliveries. The agency does not own a truck, so they rely on the Foodbank to deliver these products to them. AGAPE also participates in the Foodbank mobile markets program.
Hours: Monday-Friday 9:30am-2:00pm, by appointment only
People served each month: 1,200