First United Methodist Church of Hendersonville Receives Humanitarian Award
June 10, 2021
By: Clint Holt
First UMC (FUMC) of Hendersonville was recently recognized for its contributions to the mission and ministry of Safelight of Hendersonville NC. Safelight is a 501(c)(3) nonprofit agency that provides support for survivors of interpersonal violence, sexual assault, and child abuse. It is their goal to make it possible for families who want to be free of violent relationships, to succeed. Safelight is a comprehensive agency serving survivors of child abuse, domestic violence, and sexual assault.
Safelight has served Henderson County since its inception in 1984. Two organizations, Healing Place and Mainstay, merged to form Safelight and the impact has been deep and wide. They are a comprehensive agency serving survivors of child abuse, domestic violence, and sexual assault. Safelight offers a continuum of services helping move clients from crisis to self-sustainability with housing, employment, case management, and counseling. To celebrate the community partnerships that enable Safelight to achieve its mission of creating hope, healing lives, and changing community over the course of the past year, Safelight held its 2021 Henderson County Humanitarian Awards Luncheon on June 8, 2021.
First United Methodist of Hendersonville was recognized as the Faith-Based Humanitarian Institution of the Year. Senior Pastor Karen Easter-Bayne is shown receiving the award from Safelight Executive Director Lauren Wilkie. The faith-based community is an important part of Safelights’ efforts to cultivate sustained community engagement. The Safelight faith-based partner of the year award goes to the faith-based organization that demonstrated outstanding dedication and service to Safelight and our community. First UMC impacts safelight significantly with volunteers, financial resources, and community-level change. For years they have partnered and provided Safelight with amazing volunteers, financial support, and grants, to include a recent upgrade to the furniture in the Safelight shelter living area.
Safelight and FUMC frequently work together to develop projects that include sustaining community gardens and affordable childcare access. For years FUMC has allowed Safelight to use their space for events and groups, to include the domestic violence intervention program. Through their incredible generosity, Safelight also has direct access to fill the FUMC eight low-cost apartments with survivors until they are ready to move into their forever homes. The partnership that exists between FUMC and Safelight is one that marries the mission statements of the two institutions in service to the community in which they both reside. FUMC is proud to partner with Safelight in addressing the needs of survivors in our community.
Changing Lives, Making Disciples