Warm Someone's Heart

Just Joyce
By Just Joyce Latest Reply 2014-12-20 22:56:23 -0600
Started 2014-12-19 19:01:49 -0600

In early November, I was sitting in a meeting in our conference room at the police station. Our Area Commander was meeting with Commanders in her command along with the three community presidents. She suggested a coat drive. My first thought was great idea will we have enough time. I came home and put together a flyer and officers took them to area business, and apartments. I sent it to all of the District Communities. I named it Warm Someones Heart.

Two churches stepped up and asked their congregations to donate coats. Today we distributed 122 coats to men, women and children. Someone donated several packs of children's mittens. People were in line an hour before we opened at the church. Many of the coats were gone within the first 90 minutes. We were left with 15 coats. The Police Officers took them to a homeless encampment that has children and 15 people got warm coats.

Last Friday, I received a call from a woman who use to live in the community. She talked for a while and then said I have to swallow my pride Miss Joyce. I need help. She moved out of the city to take a job in one of the tunties. I read that the business closed 4 months ago. She is on unemployment and now has custody of her grandchildren. Her daughter is bipolar and addicted to drugs and CPS took them. Both children were born with medical problems. She needed winter coats, a humidifier and a walker for the baby. She also needed clothing for the 3 yr old. I told her we had to first serve coats to the people living in the community and she understood. I put her in touch with my counterpart in the police district where she now lives. My friend called her and got her list. When she contacted the very first person she said her company was looking for a family to adopt. The woman got two humidifiers shoes, clothing, a walker, a stroller, and a few other items for both kids. My friends police district had a toy and food drive so the officers are taking her a box of toys for both kids, and a food basket. The woman called me back and said I and my friend restored her faith in people and in God because she didn't think anyone would help her.

This is the season of giving, there are so many people who need help. They could be your neighbors, church members or complete strangers. Please if you can, donate a toy, a coat, scarves, hats, gloves, canned goods or even your time to help those helping others.

Seeing a grown man get a warm winter coat nearly break down into tears was heart breaking. He walked 3 blocks to get a coat and was grateful. He said he can now go to church. It doesn't take much to put a smile on someones face or warm their hearts. Have a wonderful Holiday.

16 replies

Dr Gary
Dr GaryCA 2014-12-20 22:56:23 -0600 Report

Joyce, that is a really great story. Your coat drive must be an incredible blessing to your community, as are you. And you made a big difference in the life of this woman and her family. We hear so many stories about the dark side of human nature, it's always nice to have a reminder of people going the extra mile to help someone in need. During the holidays, or any time. Thanks for passing this on. Gary

Graylin Bee
Graylin Bee 2014-12-20 20:34:48 -0600 Report

Last month a new employee on my shift was my heartwarming/breaking moment. She was on day two of her new job and three weeks in the USA from Uganda. Our temp was going to be about 12 degrees at the highest and minus 12 for the low after days in the 50 degree range. I ransacked my cold weather gear for her family of 6. Brought what I could. She was crying for joy when she looked through the bags. Her kids had been begging to go home and saying they hated it here. I told her even being a native here I hated it when it gets this cold.

valentine lady
valentine lady 2014-12-20 17:44:32 -0600 Report

Hi Joyce,
an other win win story you have brought us.. i love to hear the wonderful work you and your friends do. It truely warms my heart. Thank you for being you. Hugs, valenytine lady

Just Joyce
Just Joyce 2014-12-20 20:12:20 -0600 Report

Thanks Val. I am on break for a month. I have one police department meeting next month. I will be in touch with the officers. I also get text alerts of every major crime that happens in the district as well as emails of every major crime in the city so I will still know what is going on crime wise.

After the break we are going to work or more things to do for the community. It never stops.

Sally1965 2014-12-20 10:33:06 -0600 Report

Hi Joyce, what an inspirational story. The church I attend, have for about 15 years, just voted on letting a ministry occupy the basement of our church full time. The Open Arms Ministry is a combination soup kitchen and worship center for the homeless or anyone in need. This is a wonderful ministry and so honored to be a part of it. In return for the use of our building they are going to take care of the grounds and do repairs needed in the church building. I am very excited for the time I can share a meal with them and get to know them. Thanks again for the story and the inspiration.

Just Joyce
Just Joyce 2014-12-20 20:21:36 -0600 Report

We have a lot of churches that share space with others and who have soup kitchens. I was at a site where the city was cleaning out a homeless encampment with our community officers an city personnel. The community leader who requested the clean up was horrible. Personally, I cannot stand this woman. Her an a neighbor referred to them as animals, said they were disgusting to look at, smelled bad and should get a job and get off the street. Sally I counted to ten an then I blasted her to the point she said she was going to have me arrested. I told her go over and tell Sarge and see what he does. She didn't realize he heard what she said. He came and told me I know this is hard for you to do but try not to say anything to her. He lost it with her earlier. By the time he finished saying that to me, A man who worked with the homeless was chewing her out worse than I did.

People don't understand that there are people who lost everything and are now on the streets. Everyone who sneers at them could be out there with them because of lost jobs, homes, and friends and family who won't take them in. We have got to help those who need help.

Kudos to you and your church for doing this. Have a very Merry Christmas.

Glucerna 2014-12-20 15:19:01 -0600 Report

What a win-win for everyone! The Open Arms ministry has a location, your church has the opportunity to help out others in the community, and the folks who attend Open Arms have ways they can also give back. ~Lynn @Glucerna

tabby9146 2014-12-20 09:25:38 -0600 Report

Joyce, kudos to you for all that you do in your community!! not that many people do as much as you do. I myself enjoy helping in mine and do what I can and mostly through church. what a heart-warming story!! on the news we hear mostly negative, and we are bombarded with negative daily, so I really love to read and hear all of the positive stories!! Wishing you a Merry Christmas and a healthy and happy new year!

Just Joyce
Just Joyce 2014-12-20 20:26:08 -0600 Report

Tabby I gave up on the churches years ago. Many of the ministers won't work with the community. I refuse to set foot in a church unless it is a funeral or wedding or a community event.

9 times out of 10 if you ask them to help with something, they don't want to help because many of the people attending the churches do not live in the community. The few that do help are the ones who give back now and then but they want to take credit for everything forgetting the community asked them to help. It has been an up hill battle getting them to give back to the community.

tabby9146 2014-12-20 09:27:51 -0600 Report

I alwys take all of our clothes that we no longer want, or that my daughter outgrows, in good condition, and donate them. been doing that since my son was small, about 22 years now. donate money or food for thanksgving and christmas baskets, and wish I could do even more. our church is getting the baskets ready for delivery late this coming week. Everyone, don't forget the Salvation Army, to name one organization that does so much good in so many ways!!

lilleyheidi 2014-12-20 02:41:55 -0600 Report

Thank you for sharing such a heart warming story of giving. I have lost quite a bit of weight this year and a lot of my clothes are loose, including last years Winter coat. A few weeks ago I went through my closet and dresser and bagged up all of my usable clothes and brought it to our local Saint Vincent DePaul's I brought it inside and told the woman that it was all in very good condition, included a Winter jacket and was all plus sized clothes which I know the store is sorely lacking in. They were very happy to receive it.
This weekend I am going through my pantry and bagging up all the canned good that I no longer eat, and a few cake mixes that I won't be using and other foods that are just not on my eating plan and will go bad and bringing that to the local food pantry. There is no sense in me throwing all that food away just because i can't eat it doesn't mean that someone else won't.
There have been times I've had to go to goodwill and the food pantry, and I never know if I may have to do it again. While I've got the resources I'm glad that I can give what little I've got.
Thanks for doing what you do Joyce. HUGS, Heidi

Just Joyce
Just Joyce 2014-12-20 20:27:19 -0600 Report

We have a Saint Vincent DePauls that does a lot for the homeless and those in need. They do a lot of good things for the community. Hugs back.

RebDee 2014-12-20 01:07:18 -0600 Report

I feel terrible when I am called (about 10 times daily) by charitable organizations to give money which I do not have. I have given clothing that no longer fits, books, and other things but I cannot give money. I don't expect charity for myself. There are many charitable organizations where the administrators make a lot of money but it just doesn't trickle down to where it is needed.

Just Joyce
Just Joyce 2014-12-20 19:43:37 -0600 Report

Reb. You are correct. I worked for a charity that was non profit. By the time staff is paid and their benefits, supplies an equipment ordered or repaired, gas, electric, building maintenance and mortgage if the building is owned by them and water bills are paid, very little is left. I now no longer give any charities any money. If supermarkets have buy a bag of groceries for the food bank for 5 bucks I will do that if I can spare the money.

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