In a culture where time is so quickly equated to money, volunteering time has become a donation that surpasses understanding.
Joy Blackwell, manager of KARM Stores located on Chapman Highway, mentioned the recent volunteer work at her store.
“These groups reveal Christ by working hard and caring for others,” she said. “They listened to the story of KARM and were so eager to help us and help the mission.”
The story of Knox Area Rescue Ministries has been affecting the homeless of East Tennessee for over 50 years. By working to meet individuals’ spiritual and physical needs through its ministry, KARM has continued to grow and affect more and more people each year.
Because of this, KARM Stores play a unique roll in enabling the ministry of KARM. Joy said her store is extremely busy and time plays an important role in their ability to serve the community and give back to the mission. Recent assistance from The Catholic Heart Workcamp & All Saints Catholic Church plus Two Rivers Church helped serve by saving KARM Stores staff time, money and resources.
“(The work camp) was a time for people … to come together and paint our store to better our customers’ shopping experience and ultimately provide more meals for the hungry,” said Brandon Stitt, store manager at KARM Stores in Oak Ridge. “All Saints Catholic Church helped tell the KARM story by showing our store employees and customers that the mission to help feed the hungry goes far beyond our effort and is extended to all Christians and willing hearts in our community and beyond.”
Joy said the volunteer assistance took loads off of her and her staff, donating time during their busiest season and saving many hours of labor.
“The work they did would have taken me weeks,” she said. “I was amazed at the group, they were so thoughtful and was so glad to help us. The kids (from Two Rivers Church) were young, but still worked to put up product and straightened the store. They completed everything we asked of them.”
Brandon said one of the encouraging attributes that stood out to him about All Saints Catholic Church’s work crew was their willingness to do anything they were asked.
“They were humble and kind in their efforts,” he said. “It was clear they were simply here to help because of the love of Jesus placed in their hearts.”
There are many volunteer opportunities still available. To join Brandon, Joy and all of KARM Stores staff in their mission, sign up to donate your time and become a part of the KARM story.