City of Mesa
Our faith community has always been one of Mesa's greatest strengths. Today, the good works carried out across our city continue to positively impact the lives of so many. This was made especially evident a few weeks ago during my third annual interfaith breakfast. That morning, Mesa faith leaders had an opportunity to join together to share stories of ministry and service. We specifically featured two areas of need, refugee services and homelessness, that could use a little extra attention. I would like to briefly highlight each of those areas and the ways in which you can get further involved.
As Mesa and the East Valley begin to see more refugees directly located in our communities, its vital that these families feel welcomed and supported in their new neighborhoods. The faith community is in a prime position to help. Pastor Perry Emerick from Central Christian Church provided a detailed and moving overview of his congregation's efforts to help new refugees feel like they've arrived to a second home. Central Christian's mission focuses on changing the label from 'other' to 'friend'. That powerful transformation can come easily through the simple act of sharing a meal or conversation with one another. However, refugee families often need more than just fellowship. Provided with limited financial assistance, basic supplies like soap, deodorant, and other necessities can run short. The good news is you can help and donations are graciously accepted by agencies throughout Mesa and the Valley. If you are interested in learning more about how you or your congregation can become further involved, contact Central Christian's Kris Erickson at email@example.com.
That morning, we also discussed homelessness, something far too many folks in Mesa face every day. While the good news is we likely haven't seen a recent increase in the number of those experiencing homelessness, it has become more apparent in certain areas of our city, particularly downtown. Fortunately, Mesa has many social service programs and faith groups that are working hard to help these folks find the resources they need. However, there is a specific group of homeless, single women with children, that go largely unrecognized. During the breakfast, we heard from Pastor Paul Anderson of Without Walls Church about this vulnerable population and what can be done to help. These women often do not seek support services for fear of having their children taken away. Even when they do attempt to seek help, an available room is sometimes days or weeks away. That's where Pastor Anderson, For Our City Mesa, and the Mesa United Way come in. Together, they have compiled the resources to rent a small number of hotel rooms that are made available to women with children seeking help. The group encourages every church and faith organization in Mesa to do the same by designating at least one month to cover the cost of the hotel rooms. With more support, we hope that no child will go another night without a bed and a roof over their head. For more information or to get involved, you can call Pastor Anderson at 480.838.2587.
Thanks again for making this year's breakfast a success and thanks for all the great things you do for our city every day. I look forward to our continued work together strengthening our communities and striving towards the NextMesa.
Mayor Serdy presenting to Community Alliance Against Family Abuse
Mayor Jenn Daniels, Town of Gilbert
Looking ahead with Mayor Daniels of Gilbert
In March, I was honored to have the opportunity to co-host the East Valley Mayors' Prayer Breakfast alongside of Mayor Jeff Serdy from the City of Apache Junction. It was such an inspiring morning of legends of faith, leadership and prayer and a wonderful turnout from all of our communities.
I would venture to say you'd be hard pressed to find this type of coordination, collaboration and community in any other place than the East Valley. I would also personally like to thank the planning committee, Gilbert For Our City and all our faith leaders for their hard work in organizing the event as well as for their participation.
In September, I will host the Town's 8th Annual Faith Leaders' Summit in collaboration with Gilbert Public Schools. This year's theme will have an emphasis on supporting families in need and will include a presentation from Lifting Hands, on the great work they are doing with the faith community to assist in welcoming and providing care for refugees along with other non-profit groups with opportunities for you and your circle of influence to get involved.
The event will be held on Thursday, September 21st at 8:00 am at the Southeast Regional Library, 775 N. Greenfield Road in Gilbert.
For additional information on the event, please contact firstname.lastname@example.org. Thank you and I look forward to seeing you all there!
Mayor Jeff Serdy,
Town of Apache Junction
Mayor John Giles, City of Mesa
Mayor Serdy presenting to Interim Dean Bunkelmann of Central Arizona College
2017 Event Thank You!
We would like to thank all the people who made this year's East Valley Mayors' Prayer Breakfast such a success.
We are especially gratified to see people from all walks of life coming together in what was a wonderfully inspiring morning. The breakfast drew an amazing crowd and raised an unprecedented $8,000 that will be split between the Community Alliance Against Family Abuse and to scholarships at Central Arizona College's Superstition Mountain Campus.
We are very proud of how our city represented itself this year, including students from the Apache Junction Unified School District, who helped with decoration and entertainment and capped by a stirring rendition of the national anthem by Apache Junction High School sophomore Wesley McJunkin.
We thank our partners throughout the city along with all of the people from the East Valley who supported the event and much appreciation to Dr. William Crawford and his team at Chandler-Gilbert Community College for being fantastic hosts. We wish Queen Creek the best with next year's event.
Mesa Chamber of Commerce
Copyright 2015 EVMPB. Site
EVMPB is an annual gathering of East Valley Mayors, leaders of faith, local government, businesses, and non profits working in partnership on human service needs in their community.
Jay Tibshraeny, City of Chandler
John Giles, City of Mesa
W.J. “Jim” Lane, City of Scottsdale
Gail Barney, Town of Queen Creek
Jeff Serdy, City of Apache Junction
Linda Kavanagh, Town of Fountain Hills
Michael Collins, Town of Paradise Valley
Jenn Daniels, Town of Gilbert
Vincent Francia, Town of Cave Creek
Mark Mitchell, City of Tempe