Hilltop Lutheran Church in South Bend has partnered with Mosaic in Northern Indiana for little more than a year.
The congregation formed a social concerns committee and decided to adopt one of our homes on Croydon Avenue in South Bend.
Some of the projects the group has done for the residents have included, purchasing a Christmas tree for the home, buying Christmas gifts for the residents and caring for the yard by doing various projects outside.
The residents of Croydon were asked to make a wish list of items they wanted for Christmas and the congregation was asked to pick an item off of a giving tree. The list contained practical items such as coats and kitchen utensils said Mary Galloway, committee member.
Hilltop also hosts a yearly St. Patrick’s Day party for the people receiving services through Mosaic.
“For 40 years we have hosted the St. Patrick’s Day party. Originally it was for higher functioning people with mental health issues. Then it changed as we caught on to accessibility issues like chair lifts,” committee member Joyce Wegs said.
The committee hosted a potluck dinner and invited the staff and residents of Croydon.
“What I wanted the most with the potluck was for the congregation to meet the residents. Some things we do to benefit Mosaic staff too because they do tremendous jobs,” Joyce said.
Mary’s in-laws built a raised garden so the residents can help it grow. For the past two years, the committee comes out for a clean-up day at the end of May. They organize the plants and shed and do some weeding.
Program Coordinator, Sheri Hipschind says the garden was a great addition to the home.
“Just having it out there and having something to do is good for the residents. There were heirloom zucchini which they ate and it was a wonderful experience,” Sheri said.
Mary explained why she feels it was a good move for the committee to adopt the group home.
“Hopefully we can do more at the home when the residents and staff are there. It’s been a really good experience. I think it is eye opening for people to meet others in a different population. Overall it’s been positive. We’re always up for suggestions on how we can help. It would be nice to be more hands on,” Mary said.
Joyce added, “If guardianship is a need, it would be useful to reach out to the congregation because we have had people become guardians.”