Hope for the Holidays


As many of you are already aware, UMC participates in Lubbock Independent School District’s Partners In Education program—a program which connects businesses, churches and non-profit agencies to support Lubbock ISD schools in meaningful ways. Through this program, UMC partners with Brown Elementary. We often collect school supplies and food for students at Brown, due to the fact that many of their families cannot afford these items.

Although everything we do for the students and teachers of Brown Elementary is important, one of the most important things we do is donate food bags. If it weren’t for your donations of food, many of these children would not have enough to eat during school holidays, such as the upcoming Christmas break.

I know first-hand...why there is a need to provide food to students. There really are some who wouldn’t eat much at all outside of school-provided meals.

Ace Garcia, UMC Revenue Integrity Analyst in Patient Accounting was a student at Brown Elementary, and he recalls many situations similar to the situations students still face there today.

“I know first-hand, having gone to that school,” Ace said, “why there is a need to provide food to students. There really are some who wouldn’t eat much at all outside of school-provided meals.”

He said it hits close to home when he witnesses UMC employees helping meet that need.

Kim Meeks, UMC Employee Health Nurse, also said this hits close to home. Right before her son, Justin, started kindergarten, her father unexpectedly passed away. At the time she was a single mom going to nursing school, so not having her father’s help majorly impacted their lives in every way, but it especially impacted them financially.

“We got school supplies donated to us,” Kim said, “and Justin got free lunch. That helped us a whole lot!”

Kim described this time as being extremely rough. She always thought her son would go to private school, and she never imagined they would suddenly be without.

“It was a really, really rough time,” Kim said, “and if it had not been for donations, the situation would have been much more difficult.”

Both Ace and Kim agree that giving back is one of the most important things you can do.

“It’s important so that kids don’t have to go hungry,” Kim said. “It can help them be like Justin and not know their situation is different from others.”

The UMC Office of General Council collected non-perishable food and monetary donations this month and stuffed bags with these items. With the help of UMC EMS, they delivered food bags to Brown Elementary so students in need could have food during Christmas break. Although this particular donation time is over, you can always help! For more information on how you can help contact Kristi Ward, or 806.761.0998.
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