GREENSBORO, N.C. – “Take one if you need one, leave one if you can.” It’s the saying regarding 16 Cents Ministry's "Project Warmth" last year.
The campaign kicked off last winter on Spring Garden Street in Greensboro. People could either leave or take coats and other winter apparel hung from a fence.
But now, the project has hit a bump in the road: the fence they were using was recently torn down. However, Director Mike Murray says they’ve got a plan.
Every Saturday, 16 Cents Ministry invites anyone, especially those less fortunate & homeless, to a church service under the bridge on Spring Garden. Over the last five and a half years, attendance has grown, as has support. Partnering with dozens of organizations, they worship then feed 250 meals.
Last year - they moved to a lot across the street, and the fence surrounding it gave Murray an idea.
“You know, God has given us the fence, let's use it while we got it,” he said, “So we created a program called Project Warmth.”
It took off immediately.
“It caught on like gangbusters. We probably ran through 300 maybe 400 coats during the time period that it was up,’” said Murray.
Since then, the Saturday service moved back under the bridge. But the fence was torn down.
“Some of them are asking if its coming back this year, and I've also had probably 20 or 30 phone calls in the last thirty days - wanting to know, where do we take clothes now that there is no fence,” he said.
To continue Project Warmth as they did last year, Murray says they need a need a new location.
“Anywhere that is convenient for someone to drop something off, but also convenient for those that need to be able to pick it up,” he described.
Right now - the fence's disappearance is a mystery, to Murray and to the city, although the lot is part of city-owned property. Murray prays another location will become available this winter - to continue what they started.
“If God leads you to make it available, make it available and we will take care of policing it and putting up the signage that we need to put up,” he said.
16 Cents Ministry is still accepting coat and clothing donations, you can drop them off Faith Wesleyan Church on Rehobeth Church Road in Greensboro. Those donations are distributed after Saturday service.
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