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City Life Center distributes care packages during pandemic


information provided by City Life Center

GARY, Ind. (April 30, 2020) – After receiving a $10,000 grant from the Legacy Foundation and Bethel Church and Ministries of Crown Point, Ind., City Life Center has begun distributing care packages to 50 families. They hope to serve over 200.

The care packages include essentials such as food, healthy snacks, toiletries, and activities for children. After packaging the items, the center’s staff personally delivered each package to the families.

City Life Center’s Frank Jones opens boxes of donated food items for care packages. (Photo provided)

“What makes CLC different is the depth of relationships we have with our kids and their parents,” said executive director Ken Barry. “We are a family. Family goes to see family, so we wanted to make sure that the kids and parents saw our faces.”

“And we really, truly miss seeing them,” he said. “It was important for us to reconnect with them in this small way.”

Program director Kayla Warren shared similar sentiments while delivering care packages. “The expression of gratitude on our parents’ and kids’ faces was just a reminder that what we do at CLC is bigger than one person,” she said. “We’re all better together.”

Program director Kayla Warren delivers a care package to a family. (Photo provided)

Other employees involved were excited about reconnecting with the families as well. “It was a blessing getting to make the care packages,” said Jay-Lan Halliburton, puppet instructor. “All I could think about was how the kids would react when they received the packages and saw everything inside.”

In addition to serving families, the executive director provided care packages to the staff in effort to show appreciation. “It was important for me to take care of the people who work so hard to take care of others,” said Barry. “We have been able to retain 100% of our staff during this time, and I wanted to ensure that all of their needs are being met.”

City Life Center is a nonprofit organization based in Gary, Ind., that helps families thrive by connecting them to opportunities, resources and information. CLC is a recipient of the Indiana Department of Education’s 21st Century Community Learning Center grant. For more information, visit www.citylifenwi.org or call 219-880-4851.

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