Open Door Ministries is a non-profit organization based in High Point, North Carolina. We are one of the primary organizations in the greater High Point community that provides immediate assistance in the areas of food, housing, and emergency financial assistance to low-income, indigent, and homeless persons.
2014 Open Door Ministries Feast of Caring
Date: Thursday, November 13, 2014
Location: First Presbyterian Church in High Point (918 N Main St, High Point)
The Annual Feast of Caring is a community fundraising event which is held at the First Presbyterian Church in High Point and serves up a variety of delicious soups and breads from dozens of local restaurants. The event is perfect for a work lunch outing or dinner with the family. The price of the ticket includes endless soup and bread along with the opportunity to select one piece of pottery to take home.
If there are any restaurants, churches or other organizations that would like to donate soup, bread and/or pottery, we would love to hear from you! Please contact Leslie Graham at 336-885-0191.
Former Arthur Cassell Transitional House Resident Receives “Car Blessing” From Wheels 4 Hope
Click Here to Watch Fox 8 News Coverage from the Event
Wheels4Hope is a faith-based, non-profit car donation program that turns donated cars into local blessings. They are located in the Triangle (greater Raleigh) and Triad (greater Greensboro) Areas of North Carolina. Their mission is to provide affordable, reliable transportation to low-wage families and individuals who are referred to them by their partner agencies. At the Blessing event on October 9th, 2014, there were 5 cars placed with families and individuals. One of these cars went to Johnny Armstrong, a former resident of the Arthur Cassell Transitional House program through Open Door Ministries. Johnny spoke to WGHP FOX 8 at the Blessing event about how this would give him the opportunity to be more independent and self-sufficient. Executive Director of Wheels 4 Hope, John Bush, stated “in most cases success in employment, education and affordable housing requires personal reliable transportation.” Johnny has succeeded in getting employment and his own apartment. The final step was to get the transportation, which came on Oct. 9th. Visit www.Wheels4Hope.org for more information.
Open Door Ministries Putt Putt Golf Tournament
The Open Door Ministries Putt Putt Golf Tournament was held on Tuesday, July 8th at the Putt Putt on North Main Street in High Point. This family event was well attended by the community which raised funds for Open Door Ministries mission to fight hunger and homelessness in High Point.
Arthur Cassell House Resident Changes Life - Graduates from the Triad Community Kitchen
Michael (bottom row, far right) at his Triad Community Kitchen graduation
Michael came to Open Door Ministries’ Arthur Cassell Transitional House in August 2013 due to a drug addiction that destroyed all of his relationships and caused him to lose everything he had. While at the Arthur Cassell House, he quickly adapted to the structure of the program and utilized the tools he was taught to live a drug –free life. Within a few months of successfully changing his life, he was referred to the culinary school at the Triad Community Kitchen of Second Harvest Food Bank.
Second Harvest Food bank’s Triad Community Kitchen (TCK) Culinary training is only one of it’s kind in Northwest NC. Under the direction of Chef Jeff Bacon, a certified Executive Chef, the program offers culinary training for underemployed, unemployed and homeless individuals. Students are referred by program partners Forsyth Technical Community College and Goodwill Industries. Each graduate receives a certificate of training endorsed by Forsyth Technical Community College and certification in ServSafe sanitation. Sessions last 14 weeks and then a one week internship to help ensure students are workplace ready.
After completing the courses at the Triad Community Kitchen, Michael obtained a job at the New York Butcher Shop in Greensboro.
On Memorial Day, the Wheels4Hope organization gifted four cars to deserving veterans working to rebuild their lives. Michael was one of the recipients.
Due to the staff and programs offered by Open Door Ministries, Second Harvest Food Bank and Wheels for Hope, Michael's future looks bright. He is now employed, has an apartment and a car. And he has been reunited with his family, who are very proud of what Michael has accomplished during the time that he was at the Arthur Cassell House.
Former homeless woman shares her story to help Open Door Ministries
Story Originally Appeared in the High Point Enterprise – Written by Jimmy Tomlin
Ironically, when times got hard for Medina Lewis, she and her teenage son left New Jersey and came to High Point looking for a new life. Within three months, she had that new life — one worse than she’d had in New Jersey — when she found herself jobless, homeless and bordering on hopeless.
“It was definitely hard,” Lewis recalls. “I mean, not really knowing the area — not knowing anything about High Point — it was really hard. I didn’t know what we were gonna do.”
What she did was get hooked up with Open Door Ministries — a nonprofit agency that provides food, housing and emergency financial assistance to those in need — and now her sob story is a success story. She has a home, she has a job, she has a future. And she has hope.
“I never received any help in New Jersey,” Lewis says. “If I wasn’t strung out on drugs or crazy out of my mind or being abused, I wasn’t gonna receive any help in New Jersey. I tried to secure some kind of help, but I didn’t fall under those guidelines, so I wasn’t getting any help. So coming to a new state and having people help me was huge.”
Lewis and two other individuals who have received assistance from Open Door Ministries shared their inspirational stories during Open Door’s annual Gala Celebration Dinner and Silent Auction.
Lewis’ story goes back to January 2013, when times had gotten hard for her in New Jersey. Her hours at work had been cut back significantly, and she couldn’t find another job. On the verge of losing her apartment, she agreed to move to High Point and live with her sister, Quazirah Mills, until she could find work down here and get settled. Her son, Tashaan, came with her, while her daughter, Mariyah, stayed with Lewis’ mom in New Jersey to finish out the school year.
“I didn’t see what else to do,” Lewis says, “so we came to High Point.”
As she searched for a job here, the living situation with her sister became increasingly difficult, and by April she and Tashaan were out on the street. She ended up at Leslie’s House, a West End Ministries shelter for single homeless women, while Tashaan — who was 18 at the time — stayed in the men’s shelter at Open Door Ministries.“I knew when I went to the shelter at Leslie’s House, I had no intention of staying there for a long time,” Lewis says. “What I needed was a job. In my first meeting, I explained that I’m new down here and don’t know a lot of people, but I’ve placed job applications and I just need some employment.”
In the meantime, she worked with Open Door Ministries and was able to get an apartment for her and Tashaan, after they’d spent about a month at the shelters. Shortly after she obtained housing, a temp agency helped Lewis get part-time jobs working in the cafeterias at a couple of Guilford County Schools. Now she’s landed a better job that she’ll start in the next couple of weeks — working as a teacher’s assistant in an after-school program.
Tashaan is now a senior at Southwest Guilford High School, where he’s scheduled to graduate in June “and hopefully move on to bigger and better things,” Lewis says.
Lewis’ daughter has joined her in High Point now, and she’s a junior at Southwest Guilford.
An important part of Lewis’ story, she points out, is that she not only needed help, but was also willing to help herself.
“When I was at the shelter, I did what I was supposed to do — I went out every day looking for work,” she explains. “They want to see that you’re doing what’s necessary in order to leave the shelter. It just goes to show that people will help you if they know you’re helping yourself.”
The experience of being homeless was difficult — and humbling — “but it was an experience that makes us that much more grateful for the things we have and for the people who stepped in to help us,” Lewis adds.
That’s why she was so willing to share her story at the event for Open Door Ministries.
“I feel like if I can tell my story and help other people out there, and help Open Door Ministries get donations, then I’m all for it,” Lewis says. “They’ve been nothing but a blessing to me and my family.”
The North Carolina Army National Guard from the High Point Armory drop off canned goods for the Open Door Ministries Food Pantry
One of our partners, OD delivers food to ODM. Many thanks to Old Dominion Freight for their continued support!
The Faith and Love enrichment center delivered canned foods to the ODM food pantry and entertained us with a thanksgiving song.
HPU Diversity Club Organizes Fundraiser for ODM
The High Point University Diversity Club collected $850.00 for Open Door Ministries through club members and by asking for donations from the HPU community. Volunteers sat at the Slane Philanthropy Table near the cafeteria and they also organized a “dorm storm” to collect money.
Quote from HPU Diversity Club vice president:
"When we discovered that High Point/Greensboro is the #3 metropolitan area for food hardships in the country, we immediately wanted to do something as a club to make a difference. The response we received from the HPU family was incredible. Most people were more than willing to give, and several went above and beyond in their donations. It warms my heart to know that the money we helped raise will benefit dozens of less fortunate families, who will be able to celebrate Thanksgiving this year with a delicious meal."
4th Annual Feast of Caring
A BIG thanks to all who came out for our 4th Annual Feast of Caring! We had a great time and hope you enjoyed the food, fun and fellowship! Below are links to view the local news coverage of the event. Click on the image to view the video coverage.
WFMY News 2
Youth Makes a Difference by Starting “Neighbors In Need” Food and Clothing Donation Program
Levi (17) and Eva (15) Lovell, along with their parents and church (Green Street Baptist), first began their volunteer efforts at Open Door Ministries by serving meals at the Father’s Table to the hungry and homeless. Serving those in need inspired Levi and Eva to continue giving back. An act that specifically touched them was one day after serving when an ODM employee laid out some articles of clothing for folks to take with them. They had never served when clothing was made available but they watched as the table was quickly emptied. Searching for a way to help, Levi created “Neighbors in Need” and developed a flyer as a way to attempt to secure clothing and food donations for ODM. Levi set up boxes in various businesses and waited to see what happened. Two months later, he had clothing boxes overflowing and collected more than 600 articles of clothing!!! The Lovell family delivered approximately 350-400 summer/fall items and is currently collecting items for a winter delivery to ODM. Levi is a High School senior this year and his sister, Eva, is thinking she’d like to continue this program when Levi goes to college. Levi and his family’s efforts will provide food and clothing to countless individuals and families who need a helping hand. We are so thankful for the Neighbors in Need program and Lovell family, their generosity will certainly make a difference.
30th Annual CROP Hunger Walk
A BIG thanks to the over 800 individuals who joined Open Door Ministries for the 30th annual CROP Hunger Walk in High Point on Sunday, September 29th. Those who laced up their shoes from near and far impacted the fight to overcome hunger in our community and around the world.
This year, we had a special team walking with us, in Cuba. Chaplain Terry Eddinger, a local High Point resident and a member of the First Baptist Church in High Point, is currently serving as the Command Chaplain for the Joint Task Force at Guantanamo Bay, Cuba. He is the primary chaplain to the US troops working at the terrorist detainment camp. Terry has participated in the Open Door Ministries annual Crop Walk for many years and distance did not stop his participation in this year’s event. Terry was given permission at his base to form a walking team. "Team Terry" is comprised of Terry and approximately 30 of his fellow servicemen. As we walked in High Point on September 29th, “Team Terry” joined us at their base in Guantanamo Bay, Cuba to show their desire to help end hunger one step at a time.
Below are links to view the local news coverage of the event. Click on the image to view the video coverage.
WFMY News 2
High Point Enterprise
2013 Dining Out for Hunger
Pictured Above: Tony Griffey and Leslie Graham take to the streets to promote Dining Out for Hunger
Our 2013 Dining Out for Hunger was a big success! This event is not possible without the support from our participating restaurants who generously donated 10% of all sales from Tuesday, July 30th to Open Door Ministries and West End Ministries. Thank you to all who dined out and participated in this annual event.
Dining Out Media Coverage - Click on the image to view the video coverage.
WFMY News 2
Open Door Ministries RIDE UNITED Team
On Saturday, July 27, the Open Door Ministries team took part in the United Way of Greater High Point RIDE UNITED bike event held before at the 4th Annual High Point Cycling Classic.
All of the team donations and registration fees from this event that were designated to Open Door Ministries will benefit those hungry and homeless in High Point.
For more details, visit www.rideunited.info.
WFMY News 2 Veterans Phone Bank
Veterans from the Open Door Ministries Arthur Cassell House appeared on the WFMY Good Morning Show to help with the Memorial Day phone bank answering questions from Veterans, active duty military personnel, and military family members. We thank WFMY News 2 for asking us to be apart of this outreach effort! Click on the image to view the clip.
2013 Annual Banquet
Open Door Ministries held their Annual Banquet on Tuesday, May 7th at the High Point County Club. Over 200 people gathered for an evening filled with silent auction bidding, client testimonials and award presentations. It was a night filled with hope for the future and a call to continue fighting homelessness and hunger in our community.