This article was first published on CBN News.
An Arizona-based Christian University has stepped up to help local families in need by giving away more than $3 million worth of household goods and supplies and distributing them through local churches.
“GCU is uniquely positioned to serve as a CityServe HUB because of who we are as a Christian university and because of the insatiable desire of our students, faculty, and staff to give back and have a positive impact on the communities around us,” GCU President Brian Mueller said.
Last September, GCU partnered with CityServe, a collaborative network of faith-based nonprofits, corporate retailers, and farm and food supply partners, to become the first university in the country to serve as a hub for the non-profit.
More than 2,700 volunteers have worked at the GCU hub since its inception.
“The number of families we have been able to help in just the first year has exceeded our initial expectations and we will continue to expand on that as we raise awareness,” Mueller said. “Items that many of us take for granted such as a bed or sofa or clothing are bringing comfort to families who are facing challenging circumstances.”
As CBN News has reported, inflation is still running at a whopping annual rate of more than eight percent, causing consumers to feel the squeeze on food prices, electricity, and other goods and services.
GCU CityServe currently runs 90 point-of-distribution centers (PODs) across Arizona and has helped a wide range of people including homeless veterans, drug addicts, single dads, and teachers. Here are some more examples:
• A single mother of four who received furnishings after her apartment was destroyed by a fire
• A family of four that sold many of their belongings in order to afford increases in their rent received a new bed
• A foster family of five children that received home furnishings
• A young man who was walking to work six miles every day who received an eBike
“We strive to be the best stewards of the items that we receive,” said GCU CityServe HUB manager Nathan Cooper. “A huge part of that is being able to distribute very specific items that the families or individuals have requested through our POD partners. These items go beyond just the essentials, we are able to provide items that can turn a house into a home.”
GCU CityServe is helping so many families that they’ve had to expand their 35,000 square-foot warehouse to a more than 88,000 square-foot facility to make room for all the goods.
“In just one year, GCU has become a model for CityServe’s university-based vision to equip and mobilize students to meet community needs and to help families move from dependency to sustainability,” said Dave Donaldson, CityServe co-founder.