Paint The Town New

We're excited to announce a dream for this year — 

We're going to paint 100 homes by the end of 2016.

We're calling it our dream to Paint The Town New!

In communities throughout central Oklahoma — from Moore to Edmond, in Classen Ten Penn, in Capitol Hill — there are neighborhoods of homes that need a little TLC. As years pass between coats of paint on the outside of a home, paint cracks and fades losing it's color and beauty. Worse still, those cracks and peeling cause energy loss, moisture buildup, and can even result in a fine from city code enforcement. 

Sadly, many of these homes belong to the elderly or disabled who likely lack the energy or ability to apply a new coat of paint and seal up windows and trim. Or consider single moms or dads who work full time and are the only parent to care for kiddos. Time is a luxury many of them don't have. And let's not forget those families who are struggling to stretch every paycheck. They simply cannot afford to paint the outside of their home.
 

Enter Serve Moore Volunteers

With more than 500 Spring & Summer volunteers scheduled and incredible partnerships like Wooster Brush Company, we're ready renew and beautify 100 homes in neighborhoods across central Oklahoma. We want people to feel good about the house they call home. We also want that house to be energy efficient and to stay dry. This is the first step toward community renewal in these towns and neighborhoods. We hope the power of the volunteer inspires whole blocks to get involved to make their neighborhoods safe, lovely, renewed places. 
 

Who qualifies?

To qualify for our Paint The Town new initiative, we ask that your household be in central Oklahoma (the OKC Metro area) and that someone living in your home be any one of the following:

  • physically or mentally disabled
  • elderly (60 or more years old)
  • a single parent with minor children
  • veterans of of the United States Armed Forces
  • living at or below 200% of the Federal Poverty Level

Ideally, volunteer services can be provided to individuals or families who own their homes. If you are in need and are a renter, please still apply but all rental property applications will be decided on a case-by-case basis and we make no guarantee that we can or will work with your landlord.

For questions about the application or services, please call Serve Moore at (405) 735-3060.
 

Wanna get involved?

Do you want to apply to have your house painted? Here's the button for you! More info below.

Want to jump in and grab a brush to renew homes and communities in central Oklahoma?! Sure you do.

Would you like your company involved with volunteers or as a sponsor of this initiative? 

How To Make A Teenager Speechless

If you've seen anything about Serve Moore in the last three months, you've probably seen our work to #BringJannehHome

Just before his 13th birthday back in June, Janneh was paralyzed by a gunshot while riding his bike around his dad's snowcone stand in South OKC. After some pretty intense surgeries and months of rehab, he was nearly ready to come home. Just one problem — nothing about his two story house was ready for a quadriplegic in a motorized wheelchair. Almost $20,000 worth of modifications stood between Janneh's parents and bringing their oldest son home. 

One of Janneh's physical therapy assistants had heard about the incredible work of Serve Moore volunteers in repairing homes and neighborhoods impacted by tornadoes in 2013 & 2015. So she made a phone call — just in case. Maybe this organization who had mobilized thousands of volunteers for one kind of disaster could help in this one. So we got to work.

Now, after $15,000 in donations, 268 donors from around the world, 120 days of construction, 43 volunteers and volunteer contractors, 4 little brothers and sisters, 2 grateful parents, and 1 surprise visit from Russell Westbrook — Janneh is home!

The Children's Center Rehabilitation Center wished him a tearful goodbye this morning and our staff alongside our incredible partners Kendra with Home Mods by Therapists and Wes with KG Construction Services welcomed him home to see his new home and room for the first time! THIS, ladies and gentlemen, is how you make a firecracker of a teenager speechless! For the first time since we met Janneh, he simply didn't know what to say. 

We'll be sharing a video of the event very soon. Until then, enjoy the photos of our little Welcome Home Janneh party!

We can't say THANK YOU enough to all the incredible partners and friends that made this possible. Janneh's parents want you to know that you've made their house a renewed home now that all their kids are back together under one roof.

If you'd like to chip in a few dollars to help us pay for final inspections & plumbing on this project, you can! We'd be so grateful for your support.

A Whirlwind of Awesomeness

Just one week ago, we introduced you to this young man. You heard the heartbreaking story of a bullet that paralyzed him just shy of his thirteenth birthday. You heard that he's a good-hearted boy who wanted to meet Russell Westbrook for Christmas. And you heard of the immense hurdle his family faces to bring him home — $80,000 in repairs, travel, and equipment.

And then — you got busy.

In the seven days since we launched our campaign to #BringJannehHome you have raised almost $10,000!  You've pledged your time and your services to help make it possible for Janneh to come home! You have tweeted and written to Russell Westbrook, asking him to visit Janneh — WHICH HE DID

In fact, Russell showed up to The Children's Center Rehabilitation Hospital unannounced to surprise Janneh and his family. It wasn't a PR stunt — no reporters, no entourage, no videocameras — and that sincerity melted everyone's hearts. The story broke on Reddit and quickly got the attention of national news outlets and bloggers:

And from there it just got bigger...

...and bigger.

Folks. Let us tell you — Janneh was starstruck. For a kid who talks a big game, he was speechless. But Russell hung out with him for about half an hour. He also brought a signed pair of his basketball shoes and his Sunset-Orange Jersey for Janneh to keep!

As the story has grown, so has support of the family and our efforts to #BringJannehHome! So far, 145 people from around the WORLD have given to help pay for the home modifications, the emergency generator and the a van for the family:

View Donations to #BringJannehHome in a full screen map

Incredible, huh?! Well, we still need to mention that several companies have committed time and products to help:

We've definitely hit the ground running to #BringJannehHome but we still need help. If you haven't already, jump in by pledging your time, giving cash, or providing a product or service. Volunteer work will start at the home after the first of the year. Know people who can help spread the word? Get them connected! Just like anything else, we'd rather do cool stuff with friends. Let's go!

#WeAreThankful for Partners

If you've been following along this week, you know that we're celebrating a Week of Thankfulness where we focus each day on an aspect of our story and why it's so incredible. Today is no different. Partnership is at the very core of what Serve Moore is as an organization. We are committed to the process of working together with others to affect a greater good in the communities we serve.

Partnership is so foundational to Serve Moore because it was the very first thing we did. Even before the hashtag and thousands of volunteers — Serve Moore was a group of friends and neighbors from local churches. We knew two things. First, we wanted to connect the people who needed help with the people wanting to give help. Second, we wanted to work together to do more than we could have apart. And you know, that's really all you need for partnership — a common goal and willingness to work together. 

What started with a group of friends from several churches has grown into a vibrant and innovative nonprofit. But the idea of partnership has never dimmed. Serve Moore is only what it is today because of our partners. Partners like Covenant Life Assembly donating use of their gym, the City of Moore donating use of their former police station, companies like Starbucks and Chick-fil-A of Moore who believe in our mission and support it in many ways, and churches like Life.Church Moore and Emmaus Baptist Church who have continued their partnership efforts with manpower and money. All these partners and many more make it possible for Serve Moore to #RenewHomes & #RenewLives and frankly — we couldn't possibly be more thankful for each one of them. 


If your organization shares our vision of renewed homes & lives, you should consider partnership with Serve Moore! We bring help to thousands of metro households a year but we could do even more with your support. You can email chris@servemoore.com to start the conversation. 

#WeAreThankful for Our Neighbors

We're reflecting on the many things for which we're thankful this week — a Week of Thankfulness of sorts. As we've thought about the many groups of people for whom we're thankful, an interesting thought came to mind. We're very thankful for the many thousands of people whom we serve! It might not seem immediately obvious why but let us explain. 

When we're referring to people who need or use our services, as a team we've agreed to never use the word client. There's nothing wrong with the word inherently. Many nonprofits use the term to great success but we've never felt like it was very "us." Right from the start, the people in need have been our neighbors, friends, and fellow residents of the communities we serve. While it may not be the most business-savvy decision, we use any of those words before we call someone a client. 

So we're thankful for our neighbors. You trust us during some of the hardest times in your life. You trust us to treat you with respect and love. You trust us to be good neighbors. Serving you by mobilizing people to help renew your home is one of our greatest honors. We've always agreed that running Serve Moore would never be a "job" but had to be a "calling." Every single day, you make that calling possible with your trust and patience. For that, #WeAreThankful.

Love, "The Interns"

On their last day at Serve Moore HQ, a few of our Summer Interns snuck in one, final blog post. It seems they wanted the world to know what they thought of their summer spent serving those who came to serve. I'll just leave these thoughts here, untouched, as they presented them. The only thing I'll add — every day it becomes increasingly obvious to me that the renewal we began working for more than two years ago spreads to every heart and life this movement touches.

— Chris


As our Summer 2015 internships come to a close, some of us wanted to write a message of thanks to Serve Moore, Chris, Michael, and the rest of the staff that has made our summer so great!

Claire

As my first internship comes to an end, I could not have been more blessed to be in any other place than here at Serve Moore. I learned a great deal of patience and to live organized in a disorganized world. But most of all I learned how to love people the way God wants Christians to love people. Chris, Michael and the rest of the Serve Moore team showed me how to love strangers and in a way that was selfless but enthusiastic. Helping people find home when all is lost and helping them feel more secure in their living conditions is what they are about. This time alone has only fueled my own passion to help others. So, I'm thankful for the opportunity that I had and for the people that I've met. And I’ll keep the same drive from this summer to use the rest of college and on to the rest of my career.


Michael

This summer working with Serve Moore has been one of the best I remember. This has hands down been the best internship I've experienced! Instead of finding people to fill in roles, Chris and Michael looked at us to find out how best we could benefit the organization. On top of that, instead of just doing specific jobs, we were asked to give our opinion, given the opportunity to share our ideas, and the freedom to make the internship as rewarding as we wanted. I definitely won't forget all the entertaining stories told over lunch, project runs with my fellow interns, or how much I learned about serving communities!


Kaylee

When you tell people you are an intern, they immediately go to think you’re getting coffee and making copies. I’ve been told internships are meant to be unglamorous and are there for you to “pay your dues.” For those of us fortunate enough to intern at Serve Moore, we know this to be untrue! Working at Serve Moore taught all of us to think on our feet and outside the box, and not be afraid to try new things. I have learned the power of telling stories to help spread Serve Moore’s mission, and I’ve been blessed to hear stories from both families in Moore and the volunteers, and realize how individual acts can build upon each other to make something great! I’ve also learned great life lessons about selflessness, positivity, and teamwork.

So, thank you Chris and Michael! Thank you for constant encouragement to push our limits. Thank you for my first Jimmy Johns, ever. Thank you for never letting us have a dull moment, and for being some of the best, most selfless, albeit sassiest people I’ve ever met. And thank you to the entire Serve Moore team, especially y’all interns, for giving me an unforgettable summer!


Andy

Working as the Nonprofit Management Intern at Serve Moore this summer has taught me several things and has given me priceless experience that I don’t think I would have received anywhere else. I have interned at nonprofits before, but never any as new as Serve Moore. I think I learned so much more at Serve Moore than I did or even could with my past experiences because it gave me a chance to help build something from the ground up and watch it grow.

Going into this internship I only knew that I wanted to work in the nonprofit sector. I didn’t know what exactly what I wanted to do and in what type of nonprofit work I wanted to be in. Seeing all of the people that Serve Moore has helped over this summer was very fulfilling especially since I got to be a part of that. That is something that I want to keep being a part of and hopefully turn into something that I can do once I am finished with school.

So to Chris, Michael, everyone at Serve Moore and my fellow summer interns, thank you so much for this great summer experience. I will be forever grateful for this amazing opportunity to be a part of something so great.

Love,

“The Interns”

#ServeMoore as told by Katie & Grant

This week, Katie and Grant drove with their team from Lexena, Kansas to help out our community. This was their second time coming, their first being the summer of 2013. Two years later, they were able to see the progress made, as well as help out families who were affected by the most recent storms this last spring.

When asked about their favorite part of the week, Katie told us about a woman she met while scouting for uncovered needs in a neighborhood. "Her house was hit by the tornado in May. She is crippled, so she was unable to reach her shelter in time." Miraculously, the lady survived the storm! Katie was able to bring comfort by sitting and talking with her, as well as offer hope by informing her about the services offered by programs like Serve Moore.

Grant recalled the joy on a homeowner's face when a finished project was handed back over. "We just finished painting the outside of house when he came out to talk to us. You could just tell how grateful he was." What was the most important part of this week? "Definitely interacting with the people!" they both agreed.

Volunteers are able to give local homeowners free labor, but the biggest gift they offer our community is taking the time to talk with and listen to our residents' stories. It's incredible how much of an impact that truly has on people's lives.

"The last tornados were a lot more destructive," Katie said while reflecting back on their first trip. Grant added, "It was heartbreaking seeing that much damage for the first time. But, it's so cool to see all the progress!"

You too can be a part of the progress we're making to bring renewal to Central OKC. To hear more stories like Katie and Grant's and find out how, go to www.servemoore.com.

Serve Moore Beats the Heat

            When we receive a respite from the rain, what do we do? Offer Serve Moore volunteers some water then go out and work! This week, teams focused on debris removal, the Moore Food & Resource Center, tarping leaky roofs, and repair on a home that was still feeling the effects of the May 2013 tornado. After guzzling nearly 500 bottles of water, volunteers spent over 1,400 hours serving and saving the residents of Moore right at $20,000!

            In a feat of strength, IM Change Mission’s team removed a total of 10 tons of debris, 5 tons of that being metal in Forest Park Estates Mobile Home Park in SE OKC. This means each volunteer removed 645 pounds of debris! By completing 651 volunteer hours, this project saved residents almost $14,000!

            When some volunteers couldn’t stand the heat, they moved into the kitchen. The Moore Food & Resource Center, a branch of the Regional Food Bank of Oklahoma, is a hunger relief agency in Moore. This Serve Moore partner is located on N. Shields Blvd and serves the south OKC metro. This week’s volunteer teams spent a combined 255 hours at the Food & Resource Center serving 10,535 meals to 129 families.

            Moore residents still feel effects from the May 2013 tornado, and Serve Moore volunteers still answer the call to help. Experience Mission’s team worked at a home rebuilding a fence and a shed. This added up to $3,000 of savings to the homeowner: $1,600 for the fence, and $1,400 for the shed. Although the monetary savings are major, the feeling of security from the fence, the extra space and organization from the shed, and the lasting impression these volunteers left on this homeowner are priceless.

            Experience Mission and IM Change volunteered their time, materials and labor to this week’s projects, and have changed the lives of local residents. Still, there is more work to be done. If you are interested in helping renew Moore in any way you can, whether that be with time or funds for supplies, contact us!



Do you "Give Local?"

These days, we all try to "Shop Local" or "Eat Local" as a way of supporting small businesses, energizing the local economy, or because we know someone connected to the business. But have you ever thought you can also "Give Local" too? 

Consider this: small charities or organizations are commonly local establishments run by locals to lend a hand to local people! Take Serve Moore for example. Every dollar you give to Serve Moore is used by the local guys & gals who run the operation. We buy everything we can locally; supporting local businesses and energizing the local economy. Those supplies are used to help renew local homes, local parks, and local businesses. Even when we can't use volunteers, we choose local contractors to do the job. We work hard to stay local.

*in case you lost count, we used the word "local" 12 times in that last paragraph. That's a lot of local focus!

The bottom line is this; donations you make to charities are precious. Make sure that you find a hard-working, local charity about which you can be passionate and to which you can be generous. If you live in Central Oklahoma, or if you happen to be passionate about the people here recovering from multiple disasters, we would be honored to be your charity to which you can "Give Local."

Serve Moore Saturday

You know how they say, "All good things must come to an end?" 

Yeah, I don't think "they" really understood good things. Good things are important. Good things can be contagious. Good things bring people together.

Serve Moore Saturday is a good thing. Rather, it's a bunch of people doing MANY good things.

In the last 15 months, Moore has seen tens of thousands of volunteers cross city, state, and national borders to come serve in the wake of a devastating EF-5 tornado. These people coming to serve our city has been a good thing. Eventually though, all those volunteers go home -- back to their cities, states, and nations. 

But remember -- all good things do NOT have to end. You and I still live here. You and I still know people suffering. You and I still want to keep Moore a great place to live. So it's you and me -- and our families, friends, and neighbors. Let's keep this good thing going to #RenewMoore!

Let's push to get hundreds of people together for October's Serve Moore Saturday and make a huge difference in our community! Invite everyone. Even if you helped at Serve Moore after the tornado, there's still PLENTY to do!

Join in on October 25th from 9am till 3pm at 200 S Howard Ave, Moore.

A Statement on The Future of #ServeMoore

The words "Thank You" just seem so small. We've always seen Serve Moore as a team effort but we're talking about a team that's just rolled past 42,000 people strong. How do you tell that many people you deeply appreciate their partnership; that thousands of residents are grateful for their service; or that an entire community is forever-changed by their presence? 

Read More

Hello, April

As storm season approaches, Serve Moore churches are working harder than ever to make sure residents and their RENEWED homes finally have some of their final physical needs met. The fences, landscaping and shed-building continues to be of high importance in this process as they protect homes and belongings from high winds, drainage issues that result from high amounts of rainfall and hail.

Along with these continued efforts, this week our volunteers have been painting fire hydrants around the city (honk and wave if you see them!) and today picking up efforts to renew Orr Family Farm. The owners of Orr Family Farm are especially grateful for the volunteer efforts. The farm is celebrating its 10th anniversary this year, and along with the many other homes and businesses, was hit hard by the May 20th storm. The large acreage of the property means lots of debris cleanup to this day. Along with the re-leveling of gravel and walkways on the property, our volunteers are cleaning up any remaining debris just in time for the farm's annual Easter egg hunt on April 19th. This is a great example of how debris cleanup isn't just for looks - it is necessary to restore the safety of outdoor spaces like the farm and our city's public parks. 

Tomorrow

The University of Oklahoma's Big Event is a highly energetic university-sponsored service group that we will be fortunate enough to work this Saturday (tomorrow). They are bringing 200 volunteers to #RenewMoore! We can't wait to update you early next week on all the progress they will contribute to renewal. 

We are so blessed to have such wonderful groups sent our way to undertake the many tasks that go along with the renewal efforts. Thank you to each of our volunteers once again for coming and spending your valuable time (including your spring breaks) to serve Moore in a very special way. 

A Huge Thank You

As always, thanks to the hundreds of new and returning volunteers to HQ this week:

Next Step Ministries joins us again from Madison, WI

Mizzou BSU from Columbia, MO

Wonder Voyage from Coppell, TX

Seattle Christian School from Seattle, WA

University of Oklahoma's Big Event from Norman, OK

Disciples of Christ Christian Church from all over

United Way of Central Oklahoma, from Oklahoma City

First Church of God from St. Joseph, MI

Toccoa First United Methodist Church from Toccoa, GA