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Saturday, April 30, 2011
Members of Zion Baptist Church, in Henderson, Kentucky, take helping others in need very seriously. Families can receive spiritual guidance as well as generous donations of useful items for their every day lives. Reaching out to others is what the church members call “servant evangelism,” and the church takes great pride in it.
Located on the border of Kentucky and Indiana, Zion Baptist Church is one of several churches in Henderson, a city of 27,000 people. “Zion is a warm, friendly Southern Baptist church where the Bible is believed, taught, and preached,” explains Reverend Gary Cobb, minister of evangelism at Zion Baptist Church. “Jesus Christ is lifted up in everything we do.”
Although they try to meet the needs of all who come through their doors, Rev. Cobb and his helpers can’t always provide the large quantities of items needed. They distribute as much as they can without putting a strain on the church budget. Their outreach program provides items like shampoo, flower seeds, small gift items, and materials for the church preschool, Sunday school, youth ministry, and other programs.
1991 was the year that Zion Baptist Church discovered an organization that could provide them with the items they needed in the most cost effective way. NAEIR, the National Association for the Exchange of Industrial Resources, located in Galesburg, Illinois, accepts donations of new, overstock inventory from U.S. businesses and redistributes those goods to churches and other nonprofit organizations. Everyday household items, office supplies, school supplies, gifts and other amenities are available to members of NAEIR. Zion Baptist Church found a place where they could better serve the children and families in need.
NAEIR’s membership program can help limit expenses when there is little to work with. Churches that choose to participate in NAEIR’s program pay dues ranging from $495 to $595 per year, plus shipping and handling, and the merchandise itself is free. Members can request what they need from 200-page catalogs, special offer fliers, and from an online web site, NAEIR e-xpress, at www.naeir.org.
The items that Zion Baptist Church has been able to receive have been a God-send. Some of those items include office and school supplies, furniture, Bible study guides, songbooks, posters, sheeted paper, Christmas cards, toys, clothing, stickers, personal care products, disposable tableware, and food service supplies.
Items for children and teenagers are top priority for Zion Baptist Church. They provide what they call “survival kits” as part of their outreach program. Those go to children at local hospitals, pregnant teenagers at a local ministry called “Martha’s Place,” and women and children at a local shelter. “ We couldn’t do this if it were not for NAEIR,” says Rev. Cobb.
The church and its grounds take a lot of maintenance, so Earl Jones, who is in charge of maintenance at Zion Baptist, reviews the NAEIR catalogs for items such as light fixtures, paint brushes, hand tools, fasteners, wallcoverings, vanity tops, vacuum cleaners, and even a heat pump and furnace.
Zion Baptist Church believes its mission to carry out the evangelism efforts of The Great Commission has been helped by the resources they receive from NAEIR. Rev. Cobb explains, “We spread the Good News to people on the street, telling them that God loves them. You should see the look on some of their faces when they get a nice word like that!”
NAEIR has accepted and redistributed over $2 billion worth of donated goods over the past 26 years, and many churches and other nonprofit organizations rely on NAEIR for supplementing tight budgets. According to Gary C. Smith, president and chief executive officer of NAEIR, “Our members receive an average of $18,000 worth of new supplies each year, which is roughly a 30-1 return on their dues investment.”
Since 1977, the American businesses that made donations of their excess inventory to NAEIR, have done so to clear out warehouse space, avoid liquidators, and to realize an above cost federal income tax deduction.
NAEIR, the National Association for the Exchange of Industrial Resources, is a not-for-profit distributor of supplies to churches and other nonprofit organizations. NAEIR operates a 10-acre warehouse full of $100 million worth of inventory from its headquarters in Galesburg, Illinois.
Thursday, April 28, 2011
Part of what motivates students is to make learning fun. Rewarding performance and behavior is certainly one way to do that. Providing incentives for students and supplies for teachers can promote a more enjoyable classroom atmosphere that will encourage learning. But even the largest school system can lack the necessary funding for these types of incentives.
There is a school district outside of Annapolis, Maryland, that is the 43rd largest district in the U.S. Anne Arundel School District has more than 127 campuses and nearly 74,000 students. Sherry Yaniga, Coordinator of Business Partnerships at Anne Arundel County Public Schools, knows the hardships of operating on a tight budget. Her district has been under a tax cap for several years. However, Yaniga makes it a priority to provide the necessary items for teachers and students to be motivated.
Supplies And Incentives Galore
Anne Arundel School District had to find an outside source to that would allow them to obtain incentives for students and supplies for teachers cost effectively. The 21st Century Education Foundation, which serves about 100 businesses in Anne Arundel County, steered Anne Arundel Schools in NAEIR’s direction. NAEIR is the not-for-profit National Association for the Exchange of Industrial Resources in Galesburg, Illinois.
Supplementing budgets for schools and other nonprofit organizations is a goal for NAEIR. Their program allows them to collect new, overstock inventory from U.S. businesses and redistribute those goods to schools in need of classroom materials, incentive items, decorations and other amenities for students and teachers.
To become a recipient through NAEIR’s program, schools pay dues ranging from $495 to $595 per year, plus shipping and handling, and the merchandise itself is free. Members choose what they need from 200-page catalogs, special offer fliers and an on-line site, NAEIR e-xpress, at www.naeir.org.
“The 21st Century Education Foundation pays our dues, shipping and handling,” Yaniga explains. “They are very positive about our NAEIR membership.”
With 127 campuses making up Anne Arundel School District, it is very difficult to see that every teacher gets a look at NAEIR product catalogs. Teachers provide an ongoing list to keep Yaniga on top of the items they use the most. From her office in Annapolis, she reviews the catalogs and requests what is needed. Part of the success of this method is requesting as many items as possible. She routinely sends a 10-14 page request.
"The more I ask for, the more I get. Our principals call me the ‘Box Lady’,” Yaniga says. “They get so excited when I send them boxes of things from NAEIR.” They say, ‘Anything you send us, we can use.’”
Since Anne Arundel School District joined NAEIR, they have received items such as children’s books, computer software, audiocassettes, Post-It Notes, tape, office supplies, toys, roller skates, collectible figurines, stencils, cosmetics, vacuum cleaners, tool organizers, and even fishing lures.
Some schools have a “store” where they can get incentive items. Students earn points or ‘school (play) money’ for performance, attendance or good behavior. Those points are then used at the school "store."
“We’ve found some wonderful incentive items in the NAEIR catalogs,” Yaniga recalls. “Stickers and seeds are extremely popular.”
Yaniga also looks for instruction materials, school supplies for lower income students, and maintenance items. Free and Reduced Meals (FARM) gets priority, but all schools in the district get their turn in the rotation.
“The responses from the teachers have been wonderful,”Yaniga states. “They send little notes saying that the items received from NAEIR reinforce the children’s desire to learn and that they really appreciate these incentives.”
NAEIR has accepted and redistributed over $2 billion worth of donated goods over the past 26 years, and many schools and other nonprofit organizations rely on NAEIR for supplementing reduced budgets. According to Gary C. Smith, president and chief executive officer of NAEIR, “Our members receive an average of $18,000 worth of new supplies each year, which is roughly a 30-1 return on their dues investment.”
The American businesses that have donated these goods since 1977, earn a federal income tax deduction that can be up to twice the cost of the overstock or discontinued inventory.
NAEIR, the National Association for the Exchange of Industrial Resources, is a not-for-profit distributor of supplies to schools and other nonprofit organizations. NAEIR operates a 10-acre warehouse with $100 million worth of inventory from its headquarters in Galesburg, Illinois.