Every birthday deserves a celebration. Normally, these celebrations focus on the guest of honor receiving gifts. However, American Heritage Girls prefers to give gifts of service instead of receiving traditional presents. To honor this, American Heritage Girls holds the National Day of Service (NDS) around the time of its birthday each year. For the 2018 National Day of Service, AHG Staff served Cincinnati non-profits Tabitha’s Closet, The Father’s House, and Veterans of Foreign Wars on September 14, 2018.
On the morning of the 14th, AHG Staff set off to their locations. The first group went to Tabitha’s Closet located in Hamilton, Ohio. This organization focuses on providing clothing to the needy. Even though this need is great, the fervor of Tabitha’s Closet staff and local volunteers is greater. That is why Tabitha’s Closet is normally 50 to 100 percent full of clothes for men, women, and children. During their time at Tabitha’s Closet, the eight AHG Staff Members switched out the summer line with fall fashions. For Tabitha’s Closet Employee, Sheila McClew, this was a great example of how many hands make light work.
“Without these willing volunteers we would not have been ready to provide the love, hope, and Fall/Winter clothing to our community in need at our monthly opening the very next day,” McClew said. “Together, we were able to service over 200 people.”
Across town in Hamilton, Ohio, 14 AHG Staff Members were busy at work with The Father’s House, an organization that is transforming a historic property and former orphanage into a community dedicated to fostering and adopting children. To ensure that this 3-acre property had a homey feel, AHG Staff painted a deck, stained a playground swing set, and gardened. For AHG Troop Development Coach Emily Schmitt, participating in NDS was a reminder that God will always provide. Schmitt gave an example of how God specifically provided to The Father’s House when it was in need of cabinets.
“One volunteer felt a tug to stop by a Lowe’s on the way to volunteer, to see if they would donate anything,” Schmitt said. “Turns out, management had decided that morning to clear out thousands of dollars worth of cabinets from the store…to be donated to a non-profit. It was so encouraging to see how God will provide everything we need to make His plans succeed!”
The final group consisting of 10 AHG Staff Members served in Fairfield, Ohio, with the Veterans of Foreign Wars, an organization dedicated to creating camaraderie among veterans that served in oversea conflicts. AHG Staff cleaned tables, chairs, and floors to provide a clean space and make sure everything was sparkling for the organization’s steak dinner held September 15th. Afterwards, AHG and VFW Staff made ornaments for the patients at VA’s Cincinnati Hospital. For Carri Burgjohann, AHG Director of Compliance, NDS is an opportunity to revisit the pillars of AHG: Faith, Service, and Fun.
“I forget that service can be fun and an opportunity for me to be a light–a city on a hill–to share my faith,” Burgjohann said. “When I can demonstrate His love through action and work alongside someone, it brings up opportunities to be Jesus’s hands and feet.”
At the end of National Day of Service, Staff came together to celebrate another successful year. American Heritage Girls was honored to serve at Tabitha’s Closet, The Father’s House, and Veterans of Foreign Wars for its National Day of Service and cannot wait to see the good that these organizations provide to the community.
American Heritage Girls is dedicated to the mission of building women of integrity through service to God, family, community, and country. Founded in 1995 in Cincinnati, Ohio, AHG has grown from ten Troops and 100 members to over 49,000 members across 15 countries and 50 states. Girl Members participate in Badge Programs, service projects, leadership opportunities and outdoor experiences, all with an emphasis on Christian values and family involvement.