At Northridge, we believe that mission work is more than just a donation or a few hours of volunteering. We are thankful for the ways that time spent in service to others can be translated into blessings, ultimately leading to greater impact. Take a look at some of our favorite memories through mission work, and click here to see how you can get involved.
Northridge Without Borders
The idea for Northridge Without Borders originated in a Church Task Force looking at ways to open church facilities to those in need beyond our membership.
Founded in 2012, Northridge Without Borders teams with the International Rescue Committee (IRC) to provide nurture and support to refugees fleeing political oppression and torture in their home countries. Our support has focused upon nuts and bolts assistance on shopping at the grocery store, mass transit, navigating the public schools, employment counseling and employment references. Northridge has been blessed that several refugee families have joined our membership.
Northridge Without Borders is currently working with the IRC and Refugee Services of Texas to assist newly resettling refugees from Afghanistan, Central America, and other imperiled areas. A group of Northridge members will lead the effort to welcome and sponsor families arriving in Dallas in the coming months.
Northridge was a leader in establishing ELM, the English Language Ministry in 1994 as part of the East Dallas Cooperative Parish. In 2014, ELM merged with a sister organization, Vickery Meadow Learning Center, as a means of expanding the program and impact in the community. Today Literacy Achieves provides quality instruction in English as a second language primarily to adults and their young children. Classes are offered morning, afternoon, and evening and include up to seven English proficiency levels, all with classroom and computer instruction. Citizen preparation classes as well as one-on-one tutoring for the naturalization interview are also offered.
By assisting these adult students to become self-sufficient, our hope is to give their young children the advantage of an English-speaking mother and father who can help them through school. In addition to financial assistance, many Northridge members are volunteer tutors at Literacy Achieves east Dallas campus and provide board leadership.
To equip non-English speaking adults and their young children with English literacy and life skills to promote self-sufficiency and the overall well-being of our students, their families and the greater community.
For more information, visit literacyachieves.org.
In 2003, twelve Northridge Presbyterians traveled to Juarez, Mexico, to lead a bible school for local children. With school supply kits for 40 children, they arrived at the four-room cinderblock school. They soon discovered they needed kits for 108 children. The church people decided to open the kits and divide the supplies, which meant that each child received only two pencils. This was the birth of our Two Pencils program.
Each Advent, Northridgers give to the Two Pencils Campaign, earmarking donations to key local, domestic and global missions that we’ve supported for years. A few of these missions include:
- Arrow Outreach–A global partner for ministry in Juarez, Mexico since 2003.
- St. Croix Hospital Medical Benefit Foundation–A global partner since the first adult mission trip in the 1980s.
- The Stewpot–A Dallas-based safe haven for homeless and at-risk individuals.
- Literacy Achieves–A local English literacy ministry that carries on the foundation of the English Language Ministry (ELM), which Northridge helped to found 25 years ago.
- Wilkinson Center–An east Dallas-based outreach ministry what addresses family needs in the immediate area often arising from food insecurity, lack of education, unemployment, and underemployment.
- The Coffee Trust–A global ministry that works with coffee producers and their families in the Ixil region of Guatemala to empower families to achieve financial and educational independence.
- The Quillin Scholarship at Austin Presbyterian Theological Seminary–A local mission, assisting students pursuing a career in parish ministry, awarded in honor of Northridge Pastor Emeritus Roger Quillin.
Veterans' Gift Bag Project
For several years, Northridge has participated in a Thanksgiving project for veterans at the Dallas Veterans’ Hospital located in South Dallas. Members participate by filling individual gift bags with personal care items for both men and women. When the collection of bags is completed, a group of Northridge members delivers the bags to the patients at the VA Hospital.
Dallas is not immune from the challenge of homelessness. On any given day in Dallas, as many as 5,000 people – adults, children, the disabled, veterans – are homeless.
In addition to the private charitable organizations that provide shelter, food and services to the homeless, the City of Dallas created “The Bridge” in partnership with “The Stewpot” — a Ministry of First Presbyterian Church, Dallas that provides transitional shelter, primary health/behavioral care, jail diversion, employment counseling and meals to the homeless.
On the third Friday of each month, Northridge volunteers to serve a Friday evening meal at The Second Chance Café to residents.
For more information, visit thestewpot.org/meal-service.