By Justin Felts
Zion Swedish Evangelical Lutheran Church on Pacific Avenue is about to have new occupants with One Heart Spokane hoping to host regular after-school events there available for Spokane’s children as early as this winter.
Shane Austin, treasurer with the non-profit One Heart Spokane, says the group exists, “To be a blessing to children in the community.” According to the website, One Heart is a collection of people and organizations who come together to overcome brokenness and poverty in Spokane.
To this end the group has sponsored and coordinated annual back to school events, as well as a massive Easter Egg Hunt every year in Riverfront Park (next year’s Easter Egg hunt will coincide with the grand-reopening of the park). Now the group is working on getting ongoing after-school events started at their new location, though at this point they’re not sure exactly what the program might look like. The group is currently conducting interviews and polls to get an idea of the scope of need the children who would participate in such programs entails, and welcome input from the community.
With the location on Pacific the group will have multiple meeting spaces, a large kitchen, as well as additional room provided by the annex buildings associated with the church. This provides an exciting opportunity for One Heart, for the children of Spokane, and for volunteers or donors to get involved and make the program succeed just as the success of the groups other works continues to blossom, church staff said.
The annual back to school event sponsored by One Heart, this year on Aug. 19, will be at three locations in Spokane: year West Central Community Center, Grant Elementary School, and Stevens Elementary School. One Heart hopes to provide 1,500 school children with some of the essentials they need to start a new year of learning, and past events have drawn crowds of thousand from all over area. This year’s event will feature a carnival atmosphere, nacho bar and games.
If you would like to volunteer or donate to make these and other events possible, One Heart Spokane invites you to send them a message through their website www.oneheartspokane.com.
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