Q. Why does Our Daily Bread Ministries (ODBM) exist?
A. We seek to serve the neediest members of our community by sharing the love of Jesus through a hot meal. Our guests include the working poor, disabled, veterans, elderly, homeless and struggling families. Rather than just handing out food, we want to create a “family dinner table” where guests can receive the fellowship of Christian love as well as a meal.
Q. How do you do this?
A. ODBM serves a free hot meal three times a week to anyone who comes, unconditionally. By doing this we are inviting our guests to the “table” of God’s free grace. For those who request it, we also offer a listening ear, counseling, prayer and some physical necessities like clothing, hygiene products and shower passes. Finally, for those who are seeking a way out of destructive patterns like addictions or self-limiting behaviors, we offer free Life Recovery counseling groups led by a trained Christian addiction counselor. Many attendees become volunteers at the ministry.
Q. Isn’t this the same thing other organizations do?
A. No. While other ministries provide food, ODBM is the only one in Del Norte County that offers hot meals to any who need them without restrictions. We do not function like a social service agency, with applications and waiting lists; our assistance is limited, but it’s free and immediate. Addiction and counseling services are offered elsewhere, but ours are free, Christ-centered, comprehensive and professionally led. There are many needs in our community, and other excellent organizations providing services-ODBM is meeting needs that are not addressed by others.
Q. Aren’t you just enabling people to continue making irresponsible choices?
No, and here’s why. First, three meals a week is not enough to sustain dependency! Also, many of our guests are not homeless, but are individuals and families struggling with hard times, illnesses, disabilities or unemployment. In addition, while meals are always free, guests may be asked to help out to receive extras like blankets or sleeping bags. Finally, our Life Recovery classes focus on addressing the deeper issues that are keeping people from living a healthy, God-pleasing life. Our offer of a free meal is an invitation to real life changes, based on the psychological principle that basic needs must be addressed before the inner problems can be resolved. Frequently, after weeks of experiencing our unconditional care, positive regard and respect, guests become able to acknowledge their profound need for a change in life.
Q. How do you pay for this?
A. ODBM is funded solely through donations. We receive no government grants for this work because we never want to compromise our gospel mission by meeting a grant’s prohibition on religious proselytizing. We welcome donations of cash, food and cleaning supplies. You can make a secure cash donation using Paypal at the following link: http://dailybreadcc.org.
Our website also has a link to items that the ministry is always in need of: http://dailybreadcc.org/food-needs.html.
We also welcome donations of autos, recreational vehicles, quality furniture and household items that can be sold through our Angel’s Nest Thrift Store. http://dailybreadcc.org/catagory/become-an-angel.
Q. Are donations tax-deductible?
A. Yes, ODBM is a registered 501(c)(3) charitable organization under the umbrella of United Evangelical Churches. You will receive a receipt for all cash donations at time of donation (upon request) or the end of the year which ever works best for you. In-kind donations are also tax-deductible; receipts are available upon request at time of donation.
Q. What is United Evangelical Churches (UEC) and why are you associated with them?
A. UEC is a non-profit organization that assists small ministries with the administration of their non-profit legal obligations. ODBM files periodic reports with UEC; in turn, UEC takes over legal reporting requirements of the non-profit. This enables small ministries, with limited staff, like ODBM to focus their time and funds directly on missions, rather than paperwork while adding accountability and support of an organization who has been helping small non-profits succeed for over 40 years.
Q. What do you do with the money I donate?
A. Cash donations pay for basic ministry expenses including rent, utilities, food insurance, maintenance and the salaries of a full-time Director and part-time staff. Proceeds from the Angel’s Nest Thrift Store also support these needs. For more details about how money is spent, you can view the financial reports here: http://dailybread.org/catagory/financial-reports.
Q Are there other ways I could help?
A. Yes! We always need volunteers. If you have a particular gift you’d like to share with us, like retail sales experience or office administration, or if you’d like to help cook, serve or clean, please call us. If you’re part of a group that would like to offer a volunteer team, we’d like that too! To volunteer, call Mike Justice at 457-2269 or Daphne at 954-7319.
And, you can pray! Please pray for the ministry’s needs, for strength and endurance for the staff, and for God’s healing work in the lives of our guests.
Q. How long has ODBM been in operation?
A. In 2005, we began imply, serving hot food to the homeless behind Safeway. Since then we have grown to our current location and expanded ministry. We have served over 275,000 hot meals since we began.
Q. Who are the staff members?
A. The ministry’s full-time Director is Mike Justice. The part-time Life Recovery Counselor and Assistant is Daphne Cortese-Dean. You can read their stories at the following link: http://dailybreadcc.org/catagory/our-staff.
Other part-time staff and volunteers assist in the thrift store, support administration and help with cleaning and maintenance as well as food service. Read about our volunteers here: http://dailybreadcc.org/about/189-2.
In addition, a volunteer Advisory Committee assists ODBM with administration and fund development. The members of this committee are Steve Perez, Deborah Gerth, Roy Tedsen, Elli Kimbauer and Pat Hawkins. Please look for an upcoming link with their bios.