I’m sitting in my living room, thinking of what to say about our first Caroline Project organization. I’ve been so excited for the end of the month, ready to take some action by giving. But now, as I sit to write this post, I find that I am way more emotional about it than I expected. I thought this post would only be me highlighting the organization we picked. But as it is the first one, I am finding there are words to be said about how I’m feeling. So permit me to spend just one or two paragraphs on me:
There’s this woman in the Bible who heard that Jesus was having dinner at a nearby home. This particular woman had made some really bad choices in her past. Luke 7:37 says that she “had lived a sinful life in that town”. So she walks into the room carrying a jar of really expensive perfume. It is said that this perfume would have cost a year’s wages. She is crying. The Bible says “she began to wet his feet with her tears. Then she wiped them with her hair, kissed them and poured perfume on them.” Why in the world did she do this? She did it because she was a mess. And because she knew that Jesus was the answer to her mess. She took the most valuable thing she had and poured it out at his feet. The Caroline Project is our perfume. It’s the most valuable thing we have, not the monetary part…but our hopes and dreams. Our expectations. Our mess. It is us pouring all those things before the Lord because He is the answer to our mess.
Over the last month we’ve been getting more clarity about how the Caroline Project is supposed to look. Some things to note are:
- All month we’ve been documenting how much extra money we spend on Jonah. We’re giving the same amount to the organization as if we were spending it on Caroline. On the blog posts, we will not be sharing how much we money we gave.
- Each month, we’ll be doing a blog post on how we chose that month’s organization – “Voiceless” “Passed Over” “Unseen” “Marginalized” – These are words we are thinking about when we choose the organizations… These are the people on our hearts.
- All donations are above and beyond our giving to our church.
- We are thinking of ways to get Jonah involved…he knows nothing about what’s been going on over the last 3 years…so this is a little tricky…and yet, I think it can be simple too. I’m open to ideas, so feel free to share!
Okay, here we go. For the first month we REALLY wanted to do something local. So the organization we chose is called T.H.U.G. Life. THUG’s mission is to help homeless teens in the area stay in school (and go onto college) by providing for their needs…food, clothing, transportation, etc. It was started by Sara Rink a year ago when she heard about the high percentage of homeless teens in our area. Sara TOOK ACTION by starting THUG.
When this grassroots organization hears of a need, they do what it takes to fill that need: They’ll a kid pick up and give them a ride to school. They’ll drop off a box full of clothing or some toothpaste and a toothbrush. They’ll give gift cards for the grocery store or a restaurant. There is a long-term vision of having a THUG farm, where people can stay in a family environment…all of this is done with compassion, without judgment.
Because THUG is fairly new, they are in the process of doing a few of things.
- They are raising awareness in the community. THUG works with teens in the Saint Croix River Valley. They want to see “a community coming together to help these kids make it.” Volunteers are needed.
- They are gathering donations. Items needed include the following: teen clothing, all types of toiletries, gift cards to grocery stores and restaurants, etc.
- They are raising funds to be able to provide the services they offer. You could participate in this by:
- Making a one time donation.
- Commit to paying $10 per month for 12 months. (I for one, think this is TOTALLY doable! I mean, seriously, and extra 10 bucks a month? Most people find a way to squeeze an extra $10 a month out of their budget!!)
- Purchase one of their THUG articles of clothing. All proceeds go to meet the needs of the teens.
To see the entire selection of apparel, search for T.H.U.G. Life on Facebook.
Here’s what I totally dig about this organization. Someone saw a need in their community, and they just had to do something about it – so now they are. Inspiring! UGH, that is 100% HOW I WANT TO BE!
If you would like to make a cash donation, please do so by mailing your donation to:
c/o Sara Rank
424 Church Hill Rd
Somerset WI 54025
*Make all checks out to THUG. Donations are tax deductible.
If you are or know of a teen in need of assistance, or you would like to get involved with THUG please contact:
Oh, and in case you were wondering, T.H.U.G. stands for “Truly Humble Under God”.