Category Archives: Caseworker Blog

When Helping Hurts

“Do you ever wonder if efforts to help the poor actually do any good?  Does there need to be more investigation into how you give than just good intentions?  How can you truly make a difference in the lives of poor people?  Which types of ministries should you fund?” Come and learn about some practical […]

Free groceries and school supplies

On Sunday, August 15, Grand Rapids First Church will be hosting “totally FREE” – an event giving away groceries, backpacks and school supplies following the 11:00 am service. Please invite anyone who could use some free groceries and/or school supplies! For more information on this event, please click here.

Other ways you can offer help

My last blog focused on how sometimes our good intentions to ‘help’ can really ‘hurt’ a person’s chances to clear up a debt and get a fresh start.  By having someone first apply with agencies who may be able to offer financial assistance, there is a greater possibility that multiple sources of assistance could help […]

When is helping really hurting?

Sitting across the table from someone who is facing an eviction or utility shut-off, a natural first reaction would be to fix it, especially if there are children at home.  As Christians, we all struggle with the challenge to see everyone as Jesus.  We need to believe that Jesus is among us, that He walks beside […]

Under the skin, we are all the same

I am looking for blog ideas all the time.  Several weeks ago, our minister made a comment that I have been tossing around in my head, trying to find a way put this message in a blog.  Today, another sermon, by a guest minister, gave me the connection I have been looking for.  If you […]

Be Positive! Refuse to participate in the recession

Be Positive! Refuse to participate in the recession.  A local printing company (Fast Signs on 29th St) are giving free bumper stickers with this message on them.  While it might seem like a simple concept, I truly feel that it has merit.  With all the doom and gloom we are being bombarded with about the […]

OSM Safety Awareness Brown Bag Workshop (Learning How to Safely Help Others)

OSM Safety Awareness Brown Bag Workshop (Learning How to Safely Help Others) An individual approaches you for money and they get angry and aggressive when you say “no.” What do you do? How can you protect yourself? How can you prevent such a thing from happening? Lt. Patrick Merrill from the Grand Rapids Police Department […]

Community Disaster Response Plan

Just as your family needs to develop it’s own, individual safety plan, the faith community has come together to determine the tasks and responsibilities of how to meet the long-term needs in the event of a major disaster. As much as we would like to think we are all safe and secure from any major […]

ACCESS OSM can help your Benevolence Ministry be more than writing a check….

ACCESS of West Michigan began over 25 years ago out of a need to have a central database to record those who had received help from congregations.  The first official employee was a Caseworker, to coordinate and offer assistance to churches who were being asked for financial assistance.  Now, many years later, we know that the need for this […]

How to Best Work with OSM Caseworkers

As I am putting together the information from the OSM Survey Monkey (thanks to all those who took the time to participate) I thought would comment on some of the confusion out there on how ACCESS Caseworkers can best work with Congregations. First of all, both caseworkers use voicemail and email to respond to inquiries. […]