Each week, GAP Ministries warehouse becomes a central stop for nonprofit agency representatives to pick up food and household goods for about 6,000 low-income residents.

But with the lease ending soon at the nonprofit group’s headquarters, GAP is looking to settle into a permanent location that can better serve the community.

TEP is helping GAP achieve that goal by kickstarting its capital campaign for the Campus of Hope. In October, TEP provided a $10,000 Power Challenge matching grant – encouraging other donors to contribute toward the total of $1.75 million needed for a down payment due in March.

The organization would cut its monthly payment in half – about $17,000 a month, compared to the current $36,000 lease payment – by purchasing its own property.

“This was a big boost by TEP. We’re hopeful that their support will demonstrate some of the ways businesses can help nonprofits with the work we do to serve the community,” said Tiane Kennedy, Public Relations and Development Director for GAP Ministries.

The 21-year-old organization serves the community in three main ways:

  • Providing foster care for children in nine large homes as well as licensing and support services for individual foster families.
  • Redistributing food and non-food items at the Community Warehouse, serving 45+ local nonprofit partners and thousands of families living in poverty.
  • Preparing and serving between 1,500 and 5,000 meals per week at GAP Kitchen to services such as schools, low-income daycare centers, homeless shelters and elderly care. The kitchen also provides job training for formerly incarcerated individuals, as well as those living in poverty or who are at-risk.

Each week, the warehouse receives perishable and nonperishable foods from local stores. These donations are stored in a commercial refrigerator until they can be distributed to other agencies for use.

In addition, GAP works with Good360, an organization that partners with large retail companies to collect overstock or slightly damaged goods to distribute to nonprofit groups. For example, GAP acquired thousands of pillows that had the wrong label.

“I feel like we’re the best kept secret in town because we are a hub and a partner for so many,” Kennedy said.

In addition to reducing the group’s long-term expenses, the new location will allow flexibility for community members to visit the warehouse, provide collaborative space and house a visitation center for parents, guardians and foster children.

“We know GAP Ministries is looking forward as they develop their plans for the Campus of Hope,” said Wendy Erica Werden, TEP Manager of Community Investment and Philanthropy. “We know that this will be a new and revolutionary place where GAP Ministries can continue their legacy and join with all of our community partners to bring together the best that GAP Ministries has to offer.”

TEP has long supported GAP Ministries’ work as part of our company’s philanthropic focus area of community assistance, including grants to buy a convection oven to prepare meals for school children and purchase discounted goods for its warehouse for limited-income families.

This story is part of our ongoing series highlighting TEP’s philanthropic focus areas. TEP works with nonprofit partners to develop invitation-based donation requests for community assistance efforts. Funds come from corporate resources, not customers’ rates. Learn more about donations.

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