We looked at this as an opportunity for our ABF to be able to step forward and help provide not only for their needs, but also for their Christmas wish list as well.
1. Explained the need to the class which immediately sparked a passion filled with compassion.
2. Established the appropriate contact point with RCDV for needs assessment.
3. Sent out mass e-mails to everyone on each of our e-mail lists.
4. Established a Facebook page and sent out regular Facebook statuses and announcements.
5. Sent out tweets through Twitter.
6. Developed a Website through Google sites.
7. Put together short videos regarding the needs and the supplies already being supplied.
8. Started collecting the provisions (Food, clothing, household items, etc.)
9. Received donations through the social media contacts.
10. Received all collections from donors, suppliers, etc.
11. Delivered all items on December 23, 2010.
The need was raised to the Sojourners ABF and all were in complete agreement that these families needed help and ministered to.
The ABF first identified the correct contact at RCDV to work with in conducting a needs assessment and also obtaining a Christmas wish list from the families as well. The RCDV provided a detailed list of the needs for household items, food pantry, clothing, and the Christmas wish list. The need was great and we started immediately seeking assistance from other ABF classes at Spotswood Baptist Church and through the Deacon body as well through e-mail and telephone calls.
We also developed a Facebook page and sent out regular updates, statuses, announcements and linked the page to the Twitter account and the Family2Family Website we created as well. This provided us a larger outlet of viewers and lead many to start contributing to the need in one way or another.
We ended up putting out a list of needs through the various media outlets and identified the families by numbers to maintain their confidentiality. It was asked that families would "adopt" one of the families to meet their Christmas wish needs and then some. All families were adopted within a few days.
We started collecting the contributions and ended up with all of the families Christmas wishes met, a lot of food to supply the food pantry, a generator for one of the "safe houses", and $1100 in donations to purchase the needed clothing, household supplies, etc.
A number of the ladies went out with the $1100 in cash and spent the day shopping for these families. The current needs were met by the community within 15-16 days of the first notice.
It is very possible to enable the passion and ignite compassion in others by sending a clear message...of a common cause...and employing the various social media networks (Facebook, Twitter, MySpace, LinkedIn, etc.) to rally supporters and create momentum. I use this as a recent personal example of the power behind effective marketing and seeking something that others will have a passion about doing as well.
By using our personal and social networks (Web 2.0) to the best of our ability, we were able to create a passion in others and had other classes. communities, family and friends come alongside us to provide the needs for these families.
I would encourage others to find what it is that created a passion in the majority of your organization or in your specific workgroup. Use that passion to motivate and allow all team members to come alongside you and take specific areas that they have strengths in. They will step up if you find their passion...and not just your passion. Ignite their fires and let them go!