Eden Village of Wilmington is “a 32-unit tiny home community specially designed to provide permanent homes for chronically homeless individuals including patients of the local hospital.” Christina Norvell, Director of Children and Youth Ministries at Wrightsville UMC, heard about the organization and “felt God whispering in [her] ear on many occasions that [the] church could make a direct impact.”
Christina, Rev. Doug Lain, Rev. Christina Turner, and Donna Hudson, Chair of Outreach at Wrightsville UMC, met with the Directors of Eden Village, Tom and Kim Dalton. After the meeting, Christina stated that “it was clear that this was going to be a part of God’s plan to have Wrightsville United Methodist Church and Eden Village be in partnership together.”
The church created the “40K in 40 Days” campaign, inspired by the 40 Days of Lent. Wrightsville UMC challenged the congregation “to give sacrificially for 40 Days to make the dream come true to fund one house in Eden Village.” The 4:12 Youth Group and Children of J.O.Y hosted an open house to kick off the “40K in 40 Days” campaign, where congregation members heard from the directors of Eden Village and toured a model home.
The church thought of creative ways to raise money. The youth sold handmade pottery necklaces, the Children of J.O.Y collected change, and neighborhoods held yard sales in the community. A local restaurant, Poe’s Tavern, hosted a benefit night with a percentage of the proceeds going towards Eden Village.
At the end of the 40 days, Wrightsville UMC had raised $92,000. The Thursday Morning Men’s Bible Study funded a tiny home through their group’s fundraising efforts. Christina stated, “it was amazing to see how our entire community came together to raise money for the home in Eden Village.”
Wrightsville UMC supports Eden Village through their prayers, presence, and service. “We learned that our congregation and community are so very generous when we are working towards a common goal to make our community a healthier and happier place to live for everyone.”