Church project raises $50,000 for charities
A seven-week fundraising effort by members of Reynoldsburg United Methodist Church has yielded $50,000 to distribute equally among four charities.
Dennis Franko, director of program ministries, said the undertaking began April 12 after the idea was suggested by lead pastor Jeff Greenway.
He said the church has a membership of 2,400. Each adult who wanted to participate in the project was given $50 and each child received $10 for a total distribution of $67,000.
"They were then asked to take that money and invest it materials that you could turn around and sell or somehow multiply that money," Franko said. "For some folks, it was taking that money and using it to buy ingredients to make pies to sell, and for others, it was to make something and sell it."
One RUMC member, Randy Heim, used the $50 to advertise that he had manure for sale. According to Franko, he sold $600 worth.
"Some people produced their own original music CDs and marketed those and we set up a marketplace at the church so people could sell their wares," he said.
Franko said the initial investment of $67,000 was generously fronted by a number of families from the church as a loan. After it was paid back, the remaining $50,000 in proceeds were distributed equally among four charities.
One-fourth of the proceeds went to New Orleans for Hurricane Katrina relief on June 14. On July 13, the Jackson Area Ministries were presented with a check to aid in construction of a new headquarters. Last Sunday, Aug. 10, a tractor trailer full of food was sent to the MidOhio Food Bank.
Franko said the remaining money will be sent to Africa to help start construction of a church there; a specific place has not been determined.
"This is the first time the church has attempted a project like this and we're not sure if we'll make it an annual event or not," he said.
"The whole idea behind the goal was, let's do something that we really can't fathom doing by human capabilities but something only God could be a part of," he said.