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COT at Center for People in Need

Together Everyone Accomplishes More

You may notice the blatantly cliché phrase in this month’s title.  As you probably know, the acronym spells TEAM.  My apologies for the cliché.  However, the reason clichés become overused is because they are simple and true.

Never was this truth more apparent than Saturday, Jan 31st, when the Community Outreach Team spent the morning at Center for People in Need. A total of 39 volunteers, made up of Lincoln Lutheran students, staff and parents, unpacked and organized 22 pallets of donated items.  One of the more touching moments came when a watery-eyed volunteer coordinator shared with us that it would take her staff over a week to accomplish what this group did together in a matter of hours.  Possibly even more touching was our students’ reaction. Without using words, they projected an attitude of “happy to help…”

The COT was bolstered in numbers thanks to the inclusion of the boys’ basketball team, which used it as a team-building service project.  One joy of the day was seeing different groups all working together.  The work was simple: open boxes stacked on pallets and sort the donated goods in preparation for distribution.  Another joy of the day was observing young men and women “get it” so clearly.  That work was simple as well: help those who are helping others in need.

In past events, I have noticed that people are very anxious to do something that involves instant results of service.  And, certainly, that is a good thing.  However, there is also a great need (often times overlooked) for helping those who are doing the serving.  We don’t always need to do everything ourselves.  I guess it ties in once again to the T.E.A.M. mentality.

 “Wow! 22 pallets.   We are so grateful to the Lincoln Lutheran volunteers,” said Special Events Coordination Barb Solomon.  “The Center for People in Need is funded by grants and donations, like the one Lincoln Lutheran made, but we need to have community volunteers to help us assist those in need.”

The day got off to a great start with junior Kacey Kohlhof’s devotion and a basketball mom bringing in bagels and juice.  Kohlhof reminded us that everyone is someone’s “son” or “mom” or “grandparent.”  She had us reflect on the fact that none of us wish for our loved ones to go without care and provisions.  And, those feelings are just the beginning of how God sees each of his creation.  Each person is loved by God and are worthy of giving care and provisions.

This event marks the fifth event this academic year.  Total volunteer hours (446) and total volunteers (90) are well ahead of the goals set by the school when this all began last spring.  A huge thank you to all the people who help grow a culture of love and service at Lincoln Lutheran.

Boys Basketball Coach Jason Glines noted that attitude throughout the day.  “Yes, it is important to serve like we’re doing here today.  But, to me, what is even more important is the serving attitude and the way that service is being done,” Glines said.  “There is always going to be a need in our communities.  If our students learn this at a young age, they are so much more prepared for life.”

If you’d like to help us accomplish more at our next event, please consider how you might help in February.  The event is scheduled for Monday, February 16th at Matt Talbot Kitchen.  We have enough staff to serve the meal.  However, we still need people to donate side dishes or bags of chips.  To do that, you may sign up on the bulletin board at school or contact Mr. Stoltenow ( 

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