Churches in Mission (CIM) has been a cornerstone for Morgan County residents in-need for more than 36 years. They serve our communities as a food pantry and distributor of clothing, household goods, Christmas gifts, meals, and financial assistance.
The Community Foundation of Morgan County’s Capacity Grant will help Churches in Mission (CIM) update their technology. In 2022, clients received 7,975 food orders, a 10% increase over the 2020 record-breaking pandemic food distribution. In 2022, after adding clothing distribution, Christmas, and other assistance, Churches in Mission provided 11,825 acts of assistance. It’s important to CIM to aid as quickly and reliably as possible and create accurate records in planning what food items are needed to prepare food orders, number of Christmas gifts needed for 4-year-old girls vs. 13-year-old boys, and more.
Last year, more than 2,126 households were helped with necessities, all tracked through our online Charity Tracker system. In addition, Churches in Mission licenses and provides access to Charity Tracker for dozens of churches and non-profit agencies throughout the county which provide cross-agency collaboration, communication with referrals, a bulletin board system, and real-time information about client services.
The check-in computers used for daily data entry at each location are 8 to 12 years old. The computers’ ages and not-as-reliable internet connectivity create issues as they assist clients in a timely fashion. Completing 11,825 acts of assistance means that 45 aid acts took place each weekday. Having the technology to complete data tracking quickly and accurately is of the utmost importance.
The office also uses a 10-year-old printer to print client forms, copy fliers with client information, and so many other administrative tasks. Unfortunately, slow print speed and printer jams cause a slowdown in getting the information for client check-in and client use.
The CFMC Capacity Grant funds three new computers for check-in and a new printer. Our site directors and key volunteers will utilize these for data entry.
This technology upgrade will allow CIM to help clients faster due to higher processor speeds and newer operating software. The benefit not only be for their front desk volunteers, who will have fewer technology issues (which has included internet connectivity and slow response time) but also to all families served through Churches in Mission with expedited assistance.
Measurements of success will include decreasing assistance waits for our clients, increased usage of the newest Charity Tracker features (data mapping and reporting), and better utilization of technology as Churches in Mission helps clients during offsite events. The carts will help maintain the intake as well as the distribution of these items, which will also decrease assistance time.
The staff, volunteers, and clients of Churches in Mission are thankful for the Community Foundation’s Capacity Grant program and for the soon-to-be daily improvements when clients are assisted.