Common Heartbeat

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June 17, 2024

Hunger Doesn’t Take a Vacation!

“I hardly have any food left.”  “Samantha,” single mother of two elementary age children.  Can you feel the frustration, the heart ache, the worry, the fear that this mother came to us with?  It was a challenge for her to come through our door and ask for help. It’s been […]
June 13, 2024

‘We’re having trouble buying food’

“With all the medical bills, we’re having trouble buying food.” We got a call last week from “Donna” who said her Mom is battling a lung condition and their doctor suggested they call us for help with groceries. Thanks to YOUR generosity we’re able to provide fresh produce, meat, nonperishables […]
May 31, 2024

New morning food pantry location in Marshville

Union County has a new morning food pantry location thanks to thekind staff & volunteers at Nicey Grove Missionary Baptist Church in Marshville. Thechurch at 318 Camden Road hosted its first pantry this month and provided groceries to103 families. Church member and Common Heart Getting Ahead graduate Ruth Lotharp has […]
May 31, 2024

‘I have hope now’

When Tracy Kilgo heard about our Getting Ahead program while volunteering with our Great Turkey Countdown Thanksgiving deliveries, she was hesitant to admit that she desperately needed the help Common Heart could provide.  “I was afraid to ask people for help. But every month I would find I barely had […]
May 29, 2024

Welcome, Kathryn!

We’re thrilled to introduce you to the newest member of our staff, Kathryn Fairhurst!  Kathryn (you can also call her Katie!) is the Executive Director’s Assistant and also our Human Resources Assistant.  Kathryn moved back to the area with her husband and two children in 2022 after living in Scotland […]
May 28, 2024

New food drop off location now open in Marshville

EXCITING NEWS!! Our friends at the Marshville Branch of the Union County Library, NC are now serving as a collection spot for nonperishables to help our neighbors! Swing by when you’re in the area and drop off some extras to help those facing food insecurity! All nonperishables welcome, but our […]
May 20, 2024

Kickstart Kindness success!

THANK YOU to the 152 people who donated to our #KickstartKindness matching campaign! Thanks to your generosity, ALL four projects are funded! WOW! This #smallrevolutionofkindness continues to grow! The campaign ran from April 12 to May 5, 2024. These are the results: 152 donors gave as the result of the […]
May 10, 2024

Just for the guys … men’s support group launches this summer

Jay Mills, a retired Episcopal priest with a passion for helping our neighbors, is the man behind our soon-to-be men’s support group for Getting Ahead graduates. “I have a passion for helping people get out of poverty because it’s such a scourge on our community and it’s getting worse,” he […]
May 8, 2024

Now open! Food pantry in Stallings every Friday evening

HAVE YOU HEARD? We have a new evening food pantry location in Stallings! Every Friday from 7-8 pm volunteers will partner with our friends at Stallings Church to give away food to our neighbors who are facing food insecurity. Last Friday, during our first pantry, volunteers provided nonperishables, fresh produce, meat & […]
May 2, 2024

Volunteers file record-breaking 887 tax returns … with kindness!

When “Susan” gave us a call to make a tax service appointment for her elderly father she was “blown away” by the kindness of our volunteers. Her father was charged $200 last year to file a simple return for just his Social Security and monthly pension from the City of […]
April 30, 2024

New pantry location opens May 3

Union County is getting a new evening food pantry location on Fridays beginning May 3.  We’re so excited to open a weekly food pantry hosted by Stallings Church on Fridays from 7-8 p.m. With this addition, Common Heart will have evening food pantries 5 days a week in various locations […]
April 29, 2024

EXTENDED! Your donations matched until May 5!

We’ve EXTENDED this match until SUNDAY (May 5)! Have you donated yet? There’s just a few days left to have your donation matched up to 2x in this year’s Kickstart Kindness campaign! Kickstart.CommonHeart.org YOU choose where you want your donation to go! Pick from these projects: -Supporting the brand new […]
April 26, 2024

‘Loved and cared for’ – Michele’s Getting Ahead story

When we met Michele Pollard-Coons at one of our evening pantries almost 2 years ago, the situation was beyond dire – but we didn’t know it. Michele came to get food at the urging of one of her neighbors. But she told us much later that when she arrived she […]
April 22, 2024

Just 10 days left to Kickstart Kindness!

Our matching #KickstartKindness campaign continues until May 1! Give online at KickstartKindness.CommonHeart.org and your donation will be matched! Sign up to donate monthly and your first month’s gift will be DOUBLE matched! In just one day last week, we gave out 5 emergency boxes of food to families who were […]
April 11, 2024

Let’s Kickstart Kindness!

As with each spring, things around us start to return to life. And each April, we focus on new ways to kickstart kindness. You and friends like you sow seeds of generosity and water new plants of compassion locally.   With gratefulness and expectation, we look to you; the heroes of […]
April 10, 2024

‘We have hope now’ A Getting Ahead story

‘I’m feeling down. My income is too low and my bills are keeping me up all night. My wife is not well, sometimes she feels like hell and she gets anxious and blames herself for the mess we are in. We used to feel empowered, now we are just thankful […]
April 9, 2024

NO MORE EGG CARTONS, PLEASE!

THANK YOU to everyone who has collected egg cartons for us the past few years!! So very appreciated – we couldn’t have given out the eggs to our neighbors without them! We’re excited to report that our new source for eggs every month already come in cartons so we DO […]
April 5, 2024

Volunteer with us at NASCAR Coca-Cola 600!

ATTENTION NASCAR FANS!!! Here’s a unique volunteer opportunity that raises money for our neighbors challenged by poverty! Our friends at Charlotte Motor Speedway will donate to Common Heart for every hour our volunteers work as ushers during the NASCAR Coca-Cola 600 event Memorial Day weekend in May. Volunteers must be […]
April 1, 2024

Tax service is full!

Our free income tax service appointments are FULL. If you have an annual household income of $64,000 or less and need help filing your taxes this year, call our partner Community Link or visit their website for a list of other local resources. (704) 943-9490 https://www.communitylinknc.org/pages/vita
March 25, 2024

Register now! Volunteer picnic April 14

Hey volunteers!! RSVP now for our Volunteer Appreciation picnic! https://forms.gle/hbzENjdSf3hMQnK69 Sunday, April 14 1-3 p.m. (Lunch is on us!). We’re thrilled to be returning to the beautiful The Belk Mansion, LLC in downtown Monroe. Delicious food, door prizes, games & tours of the historic mansion! THANK YOU to our picnic […]
March 14, 2024

Common Heart adds 5th evening food pantry

There’s another food pantry location coming to Union County! Beginning next Wednesday (March 20) Common Heart volunteers will provide free groceries to families at the first-ever food pantry at St. Margaret’s Episcopal Church (8515 Rea Road) in Waxhaw.    The pantry will be held every Wednesday from 7-8 p.m. at St. […]
February 26, 2024

Hunger Walk: 6 DAYS AWAY!

6 DAYS AWAY!!! Common Heart Hunger Walk is Sunday, March 3! Don’t leave Fido at home…leashed dogs are welcome! Our friends at Pressly Animal Hospital,PLLC in Stallings are returning as the Bark Zone sponsor for this event! At their booth near check-in, you’ll find FREE doggy bandanas, treats, giveaways & […]
February 15, 2024

How can you help your neighbors?

TRAINING OPPORTUNITY! This month we’re focusing on ways we can “Spread the Love” to our hungry neighbors. Becoming a Cupboard Ally volunteer who delivers groceries once/month is a fantastic way to do this! We have an in-person training opportunity THIS SUNDAY (Feb. 18) in Monroe. Interested? Call Jurivia at 980-443-3841 […]
February 13, 2024

Welcome, Deborah!

We’re so excited to introduce you to our newest member of the team, Deborah Luna, bookkeeper! Deborah discovered Common Heart after retiring from a corporate bookkeeping job and brings many years of expertise to this small revolution of kindness. “I was looking for something that could bridge my desire for […]
February 5, 2024

‘I didn’t know how many people experience food insecurity’

Thanks so much Carmel Christian School high schoolers for sharing your thoughts (& photos!) serving with us last week. January was #PovertyAwarenessMonth and they certainly learned some things! Written on their evaluation forms… “I can’t believe people in my own neighborhood could be going through hardships.” “My biggest takeaway is […]
February 2, 2024

4 weeks away! Hunger Walk is March 3!

We got a Facebook message recently from “Sarah,” saying that even in a double income household, it was “overwhelming” to try to provide for their 3 children, especially with rising prices. “Gas and groceries are killing us and we’re falling behind on bills,” she said. “We need help to feed our […]
January 29, 2024

Learning how to help our neighbors!

These friends took the first step in learning how to better help their neighbors facing food insecurity by joining us last Saturday for Cupboard Ally volunteer training! They’ll soon begin delivering groceries (& hope!) to our neighbors once/month and we can’t wait to see what friendships develop! Are you ready […]
January 22, 2024

Tax service on TV!

Many thanks to WCNC-TV for highlighting our FREE income tax service with a great story! This free service is open to anyone with a household income of $64,000 or less. Appointments are available Tuesdays, Thursdays & Saturdays through April 15. Make your appointment online at 1040.CommonHeart.org OR call 704-218-9060 Mon-Fri […]
January 16, 2024

Cupboard Ally Volunteer Training Jan. 20

The new year is a perfect time to think about how you can give back. We have lots of ongoing volunteer opportunities and among those, the most urgent is for more Cupboard Ally volunteers to deliver groceries (and hope!) to families once a month! We currently have a waiting list of […]
January 9, 2024

Welcome, Jordan!

We’re so excited to introduce you to our newest member of the team, Jordan Faulkner, Indian Trail Cupboard Manager.  Jordan, 28, is a former CDL truck driver and has worked in construction, but said he was “tired of working a job just for a paycheck. I’ve worked many different types of […]
January 8, 2024

Hunger Walk registration now open!

Team Captain dinner Jan. 11! Get those walking shoes ready … the Common Heart Hunger Walk is less than 8 WEEKS AWAY and registration is now open! This year’s annual fundraiser where we join together to take steps to end local hunger is Sunday, March 3 at Crooked Creek Park in Indian […]
December 13, 2023

Getting Ahead graduation Dec. 21

Our current Getting Ahead group is graduating and YOU’RE INVITED! Come celebrate their hard work on Thursday, Dec. 21 from 6-8 p.m. at Central UMC in Monroe. Dinner provided. To RSVP, call 704-248-2648. Want to help provide gifts for our grads? Shop needed toiletries & household cleaning supplies on our Amazon […]
December 7, 2023

Our Christmas Wish: A hope-filled future

As I consider the amazing success of our Great Turkey Countdown, I am overcome with gratitude and awe. What we have done together, providing Thanksgiving to over 1,500 families, is amazing! Together, we may have created joy and happiness for a day, yet in my heart I have a bigger […]
December 5, 2023

You can help! 30+ families waiting for monthly food delivery

Delivering groceries isn’t just for Thanksgiving! Our Cupboard Ally volunteers deliver groceries (and hope!) to families once a month! It’s a very unique and special volunteer opportunity to not just serve these food insecure neighbors, but to also build friendships! One of our Ally volunteers said recently that she enjoys sending […]
November 27, 2023

Giving Tuesday is here!!

Tomorrow is #GivingTuesday! Join us in this small revolution of kindness. Our goal: $8,000 to put 10 family leaders through the entire Getting Ahead program. Your generosity provides folks with the opportunity to learn essential skills, empowering them to rise out of poverty and write new future stories for their […]
November 9, 2023

9 days & 814 turkeys to go!

814 turkeys to go! 9 days until delivery day! 106 drivers still needed! 40 people still needed to load cars in Marshville! The Great Turkey Countdown continues!! We’re hunting for 1,500 turkeys to bless 1,500 families this Thanksgiving AND the volunteer drivers to deliver those feasts! Have you donated yet? […]
October 27, 2023

Thrive! Union hosts poverty simulation Nov. 9 in Monroe

Could you survive one month living in poverty? Find out Thursday, Nov. 9 from 10am – 1pm at the Union County Human Services Agency in Monroe whenThrive! Union presents a Community Action Poverty Simulation. The simulation was developed by MissouriCommunity Action Network as an experience to break down stereotypes by […]
October 16, 2023

Great Turkey Countdown is here!

 Calling all turkeys! Common Heart is seeking donations to provide 1,500 frozen turkeys with all the fixin’s to 1,500 families facing food insecurity so they can prepare their own Thanksgiving feasts. It’s the 17th annual Great Turkey Countdown!  This volunteer-driven event is Common Heart’s biggest delivery day and continues to […]
October 13, 2023

What skills can you share?

Did you know that we host monthly resource meetings? These fun, informative sessions are for Getting Ahead graduates as they move through their journey out of poverty and into stability. We’ve had sessions on everything from couponing and canning to budgeting, car repair and planning for home ownership. Last month […]
September 28, 2023

Deliver groceries – and hope! – to our neighbors facing food insecurity

We have a waiting list of neighbors who need groceries – and hope! – delivered to them once/month. Some don’t have transportation, others work during our evening pantries and some are senior citizens or have special dietary needs, such as diabetes. Our Cupboard Ally volunteers pick up groceries once/month from […]
September 22, 2023

Love in Action Gala tickets still available!

In this Love in Action season we’re SO glad we got to celebrate with our Getting Ahead graduate Holland and her children this month during a groundbreaking ceremony for their new home with our friends at Greater Matthews Habitat for Humanity. Holland was one of our very first GA graduates […]
September 14, 2023

Welcome, Amber!

We’re excited to introduce you to another new member of our staff, Amber Mercier, Indian Trail Evening Pantry Manager. If you’ve volunteered recently to help with our Monday or Thursday evening pantries you’ve met Amber! This dedicated Mom of 3 has entered back into the workforce with a purpose. “I […]
September 5, 2023

Getting Ahead grad to get Habitat house

We’re so proud of Getting Ahead graduate Holland who will be breaking ground Saturday, Sept. 9 on a Habitat for Humanity house in Matthews! Holland was part of the first official graduating GA session in June 2018. Thank you Greater Matthews Habitat for Humanity for sharing this story with us! […]
September 1, 2023

Common Heart’s Love in Action season is here!

New City Church, Moser Group, & 704 Church kick off month-long fundraising blitz When volunteers met “Betty” last week she had cut back to only eating twice a day because she didn’t have enough food. This Union County senior citizen was embarrassed to show volunteers her almost empty refrigerator and […]
August 30, 2023

Sept. 16: The Power of TED workshop

Don’t miss this workshop! September 16: Brand new offering! The Power of TED* The Empowerment Dynamic.  For the past several years we have offered this training as part of our Stability & Growth workshops for graduates of Getting Ahead. With this workshop, we begin to offer a full Power of TED* Workshop to our allies, […]
August 22, 2023

Welcome, Jurivia!

We’re thrilled to welcome the newest member of our staff, Jurivia Rojas, Cupboard Ally Program Manager. Jurivia said she wanted to work with Common Heart because of “the opportunity to make a difference.” She’s a Monroe native who “saw and experienced first-hand how hunger impacts our community. Working here I […]
August 16, 2023

Congrats Getting Ahead graduates!

Our Getting Ahead Session is “Pressing on for a Better Future” – the theme they chose for their graduation ceremony last week! CONGRATS to Jeanette, Patricia, Bobbie, Allison & Shannon!!! These dedicated friends have been working incredibly hard over the past 17 weeks investigating poverty in their own lives and our […]
August 11, 2023

FINAL DAYS! Hunger Doesn’t Take a Vacation campaign ends Aug. 15

Time is running out in our Hunger Doesn’t Take a Vacation campaign — it ends Tuesday, Aug. 15! There’s still time to give and help our neighbors facing food insecurity. StopSummerHunger.CommonHeart.org We got a Facebook message from “Kevin” recently asking how he could get some groceries for his family to help them get […]
August 7, 2023

Free pet care clinic helps our furry friends

Thanks to our friends at The Street Dog Coalition, 18 dogs & 9 cats belonging to our Getting Ahead graduates and Cupboard Ally neighbors got free medical care recently! Treatments included an exam and any necessary shots, heartworm tests, flea and ear mite treatments and preventatives like medications for ticks, […]
August 4, 2023

Going above & beyond to #StopSummerHunger

Our grocery rescue volunteer Marissa Hejka is going above and beyond to help #StopSummerHunger this year. She’s hosted an online fundraiser and a food drive collecting 138 pounds of groceries from family & friends. WAY TO GO!! It’s not too late to join the Stop Summer Hunger Peer-to-Peer (P2P) Campaign […]
August 4, 2023

NEW workshops coming!

We’re thrilled to announce a couple of upcoming workshops where you can deepen your understanding of our neighbors in poverty and build truly empowering relationships. These workshops will provide valuable insights and practical knowledge on how we can truly create a small revolution of kindness in our community.  During these […]
July 20, 2023

Feeding our neighbors: A community effort!

Feeding our neighbors challenged by food insecurity is truly a community effort — and word can spread! We saw that recently when our friend, Pastor Brad Cunningham at Union UMC, got an email from a local Aldi manager asking if they could use extra bread for the Thursday evening pantry. […]
July 14, 2023

Welcome, Will!

We’re thrilled to welcome the newest member of our staff, Will Branch, Indian Trail Pantry Manager. (Front row, far right) With his infectious smile and positive attitude Will is quickly becoming a volunteer favorite in Indian Trail! So far, Will says the job has been a “rewarding challenge.” “I wanted […]
July 11, 2023

Thanks Happy Pig Farms!

SHOUT OUT to our new partner, Happy Pig Farms, for donating literally THOUSANDS of pounds of pasture-raised frozen pork products over the past few months! This organic farm in Peachland really cares for our neighbors struggling with food insecurity. THANK YOU! You’ll find them at the Waxhaw Farmers’ Market or […]
July 11, 2023

Getting Ahead: Samantha’s story

Getting Ahead graduate Samantha Covington said when she started attending her Getting Ahead session a few months ago she felt stuck. Her husband lost his job during the pandemic and started his own business repairing motors & transmissions. She owns a catering business, but with two kids, ages 4 and […]
July 11, 2023

Food Lion Feeds donates $4K to feed our neighbors

Local nonprofit Common Heart has received $4,000 from the Food Lion Feeds Charitable Foundation to help Union County neighbors facing food insecurity. That’s enough to provide a week’s worth of groceries to 160 families. Common Heart is one of more than 220 nonprofit organizations in Food Lion’s 10 state-wide footprint […]
July 5, 2023

Hunger Doesn’t Take a Vacation!

“I am a single mom of two amazing kids. I work real hard to keep a roof over their heads and make sure they are well fed and have all they need. But it is getting tougher.” Anna didn’t have to worry much about food until prices started going up and then her food […]
June 20, 2023

Food drives are key! Can you help?

Our friends at @faith_is_alive_umc just dropped off 869 pounds of nonperishables for our neighbors! That’s almost 3x the amount of an “average” food drive of 300 pounds. Thanks so much! Food drives are vital to making sure we have enough nonperishables to continue to serve the increasing number of families […]
June 7, 2023

Cupboard Ally volunteers go the extra mile for our neighbors

Our Cupboard Ally volunteers often find that the chance for connection is the greater blessing than the groceries they deliver once a month. It’s in these moments that we discover just how far a conversation, a smile and a hug will go! If you’re looking for a longer-term monthly opportunity […]
May 31, 2023

Getting Ahead – Beverly’s story

When Beverly Walker first heard about Getting Ahead she was waiting in line at a mobile food pantry with our friends at the Community Shelter in Monroe. Health issues put her on work disability two years ago and Beverly said she was “in a rut and didn’t know how to […]
May 30, 2023

‘Taking care of our neighbors’

Common Heart intern, Grant Summerhill, worked his first mobile food pantry with us last week. He wrote about his experience… There’s something about taking care of our neighbors, especially working alongside them in our community’s struggle with food insecurity, that gets me up in the morning. Being able to work […]
May 23, 2023

Welcome, Kevin!

We’re thrilled to welcome the newest member of our staff as we grow, Kevin Daniels, Food Raising Leader!  If you were involved in our free income tax service this year you’ll recognize Kevin – he was one of our amazing greeters helping clients check in and get ready for their […]
May 18, 2023

Welcome Grant, our summer intern!

We’re thrilled to welcome our summer intern, Grant Summerhill! Grant is a senior marketing/communications student at UNC Pembroke. His first task here at Common Heart was to introduce himself to you – our volunteers, friends & supporters.  So here…in his own words… meet Grant!  Hi! I’m 24 years old and […]
May 15, 2023

May 25: Getting Ahead graduation

Our current Getting Ahead focus/empowerment group is graduating and YOU’RE INVITED!!! Please join us for dinner at 6 p.m. Thursday, May 25 at Community Church of Monroe (224 E. Old Hwy. 74) and help us celebrate these hard-working neighbors who put in a lot of long hours assessing our community’s […]
May 2, 2023

Record-breaking tax season!

“This time of year is always stressful for many and I really appreciated the service and compassion I received. Thank you for helping to ease this burden.”  This was the thank you message tax client Alyssa sent after having her taxes prepared and filed for free by Common Heart volunteers […]
April 25, 2023

Just 13 DAYS LEFT to Kickstart Kindness!

“With inflation, we’re struggling to make ends meet and we make just a little too much to qualify for food stamps.” This was a Facebook message we got recently from a Mom who, like so many of our neighbors right now, is facing food insecurity. You can help our neighbors in […]
April 17, 2023

Let’s Kickstart Kindness!

New Recuring Donations – Triple Matched Special Donations – Matched $1 for $1 Nonperishable Food Donations – Matched $1 per 10 pounds Greetings Common Heart friends, I’m reaching out to you because you have been there for our neighbors and friends. Thanks to your service, kindness, and generosity, food and […]
April 6, 2023

Biggest Need: Nonperishables & lots of them!

Like so many of her neighbors, “Anna” had never been to a food pantry before when she messaged us on Facebook recently to ask how she could get food for her children. The need, she said, was “urgent.” She’s working, but just can’t keep up with the bills, especially with […]
April 4, 2023

Welcome, Mark!

Indian Trail Evening Pantries Manager We’re so excited to introduce you to our newest member of the team, Mark Spencer, Indian Trail Evening Pantries Manager. If you’ve volunteered to help pack up food on Monday or Thursday afternoons in Indian Trail or serve at our Mill Grove UMC or Union […]
March 30, 2023

April 23: Volunteer Appreciation Picnic at Historic Belk Mansion

Calling all Common Heart volunteers!! Please join us for a Volunteer Appreciation Picnic at the Historic Belk Mansion in Monroe! Get a sneak peek of this amazing historic home built in 1903 for Dr. John Belk before it opens to the public!! We’ll provide lunch so all you have to […]
March 28, 2023

Getting Ahead: Ruth’s story

It was the encouragement of her 12-year-old daughter that pushed Ruth Wilson to join Getting Ahead last year. She learned about the focus/empowerment group when she was waiting in line to get groceries from Common Heart’s food pantry at Union United Methodist Church in Waxhaw. She took the flyer and […]
March 27, 2023

April 29: Bridges Out of Poverty workshop

One of the most impactful opportunities to serve and make a difference, is being an intentional friend and ally for an individual experiencing poverty and food insecurity! This is really what this small revolution of kindness is all about. If you’d like to learn how to better help our neighbors, register […]
March 23, 2023

Welcome, Kyril!

Indian Trail Office Assistant We’re so excited to introduce you to another new staff member as we grow – Kyril Adams. If you’ve called our Indian Trail office recently you’ve probably talked with Kyril! As the Indian Trail Office Assistant, Kyril answers phone calls, does data entry and helps keep […]
March 21, 2023

Hunger Walk: $83,000 raised!

It’s hard to believe Hunger walk was only 2 weeks ago! What a wonderful day of celebration, fun, and of course, walking!Because of your generosity, we raised over $83,000! Wow! Thank you! While we didn’t reach our $100,000 goal, we are AMAZED and PROUD about this amount! Each dollar raised […]
March 8, 2023

Welcome, Alexis!

We’re so excited to introduce you to another new member of the Common Heart team, Alexis McDonald, Marshville Pantry Manager. If you’ve volunteered in Marshville recently you’ve surely met Alexis and heard about her love for cooking!  Alexis has a degree in human services & outreach and says she’s “so […]
February 28, 2023

Hunger Walk: 5 DAYS AWAY!!

“Daniel” stopped by our Marshville office last week looking for food to help feed his children. He’s a single father and said though he doesn’t qualify for food stamps he’s struggling to make sure they have enough to eat. Thanks to donations from friends like YOU we were able to […]
February 23, 2023

Welcome, CatherineTaraji!

Economic Empowerment Center Office Assistant We’re so excited to introduce you to another new staff member as we grow – CatherineTaraji B-Joseph! If you’ve volunteered with us in Marshville recently or stopped by the office there you’ve likely met CatherineTaraji, our Economic Empowerment Center Office Assistant. CatherineTaraji has been helping us get […]
February 20, 2023

Hunger Walk: Monthly grocery delivery brings hope, too!

One of our Cupboard Ally volunteers recently had a new name on his monthly grocery delivery list: “Diana.” When he stopped by with groceries (and hope!) the tears flowed. Diana, who is disabled and can’t drive to our evening food pantries, was overwhelmed with gratitude for the food. You can […]
February 10, 2023

Hunger Walk: Meals for Getting Ahead are key

Did you know? Just $100 a month provides meals for an entire Getting Ahead training session for family leaders to create a self-sufficient future breaking the power of generational poverty. Not having to worry about dinner on evenings when there are sessions is a huge burden for these families and […]
February 9, 2023

Welcome, Elizabeth!

We’re so excited to introduce you to our newest member of the team, Elizabeth Carpenton, Partner Engagement Leader. She’s been hard at work already with our upcoming Hunger Walk! Elizabeth is a Charlotte native (one of the few!) and comes to us from Matthews United Methodist Church where she was […]
February 7, 2023

Tax service is open!

Our 12th annual free income tax service kicked off last week and volunteers are busy preparing and filing taxes for our neighbors — for FREE!!! Taxes are completed by trained and certified volunteers as part of the national Volunteer Income Tax Assistance, or VITA, program. The free service is available to anyone […]
February 2, 2023

Enter to WIN this vintage quilt!

Our friends at The Brass Grasshopper: Antiques • Vintage • Local in Matthews are having a raffle for this GORGEOUS handmade, vintage quilt with all the proceeds to benefit Common Heart! Entries are just $1 each and a winner will be drawn Feb. 13. The quilt measures 6 foot, four […]
January 31, 2023

Key Volunteer Opportunity!

Getting Ahead meals needed There’s LOTS of chances this year to prepare (or purchase!) a meal for the hard-working Moms, Dads (& their kiddos!) in one of our Getting Ahead work groups. This is a fantastic opportunity for church, school or neighborhood groups to serve together! Opportunities available in Marshville. Arrangements can […]
January 26, 2023

Hunger Walk: ‘They’re cared about’

A Cupboard ally volunteer discovered, much to her surprise, as she visited with one of the neighbors she delivered to, that she went to school with their grandkids! It’s those connections that have made it easy to become friends. “Since we know a lot of the same people, I get […]
January 24, 2023

Free income tax service starts Jan. 31!

Beginning Tuesday, Jan. 31, Common Heart volunteers will once again offer a free income tax service to local residents.   This will be the 12th year Common Heart has offered free tax services, which are completed by trained and certified volunteers as part of the national Volunteer Income Tax Assistance, or […]
January 19, 2023

Hunger Walk is coming…hear Harriet’s story

When Harriet first visited one of our evening pantries, it was clear she felt awkward and very embarrassed. She hadn’t had a real meal in over a week! She saw the sign for the pantry and stopped by. But what she found was friendly people, “right neighborly folks.” The smiles […]
January 17, 2023

Welcome, Kevin!

Indian Trail Cupboard Manager We’re so excited to introduce you to our newest member of the team, Kevin Kovanis. If you’ve volunteered at one of our Indian Trail-area evening pantries recently, Kevin will look familiar as he’s been serving there. But with Ayana off to pursue a master’s degree (Good luck!) […]
January 13, 2023

Tax season is approaching!

We’re looking for volunteers to help with our FREE income tax service, beginning Jan. 31! Greeters: Welcome our neighbors and help them fill out forms. Brief ethics training required. Preparers: Online training and certifications required. If you can do your own taxes with TurboTax you can be trained and certified! Interested? Email Volunteer@CommonHeart.org or […]
January 12, 2023

Registration open! Common Heart Hunger Walk set for March 5

We got a Facebook message recently from “Claire,” saying she had “fallen behind” on bills, and as a single Mom it was “overwhelming” to try to provide for her children, especially with rising prices. She needed food for her family, and thanks to generous volunteers and donations, she was able […]
December 19, 2022

A powerful story of kindness. Our Christmas Wish continues!

Are you with Common Heart?” This was the question that sparked a memorable conversation last week for our Operations Director, Nelson. He was working with volunteers to clean up after one of our food pantries in Monroe when a gentleman pulled into the parking lot with this question. This Marine […]
December 13, 2022

Welcome, Nikki!

Executive Assistant to the Executive Director & HR Administrator We’re so excited to introduce you to our newest member of the team, Nikki Robertson. Nikki has been around Common Heart for years as a volunteer for events and at our former thrift shop with her oldest daughter, Kassandra. She’s wanted to […]
December 8, 2022

Kindness ‘going the extra mile’

Thanksgiving may be behind us and yummy leftovers a distant memory…but we’re still excited to be hearing stories from Great Turkey Countdown volunteers about their experiences and the many Thank Yous from neighbors receiving the extra bounty during this season of generosity. We heard this week from a recently single […]
November 30, 2022

Help fill Getting Ahead graduation baskets!

Before the end of the year, we’ll have not one but TWO Getting Ahead sessions ready to celebrate their completion of this life-changing focus/empowerment group! For each graduate (we expect about 20 this session), we provide a basket full of basic household essentials that you can’t buy with food stamps. We’re collecting […]
November 8, 2022

Kindness ‘behind the scenes’

Food drives are key to feeding our neighbors There are so many volunteers, donors & friends who work “behind the scenes” to make sure our neighbors don’t go hungry. Our friends at All Saints Anglican Church in Weddington definitely fall in this category! Almost every week for the past 3 years (yes… […]
October 27, 2022

1,286 turkeys to go!!

The Great Turkey Countdown stands at 1,286 turkeys* to go with 23 days left!! So far, 48 donors have given 214 turkeys!  Follow the countdown at Common Heart’s Facebook page! This year, our goal is 1,500 turkeys for 1,500 families. It will not happen without all of us pulling together. Who will give […]
October 19, 2022

Kindness is contagious!

Have you ever had to call a time out? Not in a sports game, but in life just to take a moment and stop and refocus.  Our Operations Director Nelson Hardin did just that last week at the food pantry at Benton Heights Presbyterian Church in Monroe when he heard […]
October 12, 2022

Congrats 2022 Love In Action Volunteer Honorees!

Volunteers are the heroes of our organization and play an important role in the pantries, economic empowerment, fundraising and volunteer development. We have a special group of volunteer honorees that we would like to recognize for representing this small revolution of kindness. Bruce Gorrell is a long-time Common Heart volunteer […]
October 11, 2022

Nitya knows how to put #loveinaction!

In just three months, 16-year-old Nitya Kapilavayi from Weddington volunteered 100 hours in our Indian Trail Common Cupboard. You read that correctly — 100 hours!!! This amazing accomplishment earned Nitya a Gold President’s Volunteer Service Award through AmeriCorps. During the summer months she was a fixture at our Indian Trail location doing everything […]
October 5, 2022

Welcome, Amanda!

We’re thrilled to introduce you to one of our newest members of the Common Heart staff, Amanda Kurtz, Engagement Event Leader. During this Love in Action season, Amanda has been working hard behind-the-scenes to bring you an amazing experience at our Love in Action Gala fundraiser on Friday (Do you have […]
September 28, 2022

Celebrating our Love in Action – Limited number of tickets still available!

It’s Love in Action season! During some of her darkest days before Getting Ahead, Tacara Howard says she turned to drugs and alcohol to try to cope. She was homeless, living in her car and unemployed all while trying to care for her two sons, ages 9 & 14.  Her […]
September 26, 2022

‘Sally’ had never been to a food pantry before: Love in Action story

Have you heard?? It’s Love in Action season! LoveInAction.CommonHeart.org We got a message on Facebook last week from “Sally” who heard that we might be able to help with groceries. She explained that she’s disabled and though her husband is working he’s also fighting cancer and the bills are piling […]
September 13, 2022

Love in Action season is here!

When Tacara Howard walked into her first Getting Ahead group session she was “heavy hearted.” Still grieving the loss of her Mom, she had just gotten out of a bad relationship, was homeless, unemployed and sleeping in her car. This single Mom of two boys, ages 9 & 14, was […]
September 8, 2022

Welcome, Ayana!

We’re so excited to introduce you to our newest member of the team, Ayana Meacham, who is now our Indian Trail Pantry Manager. If you’ve volunteered with us in Marshville recently you’ll know Ayana as she started her time with us there. She’ll now be working with volunteers and our […]
September 6, 2022

Love in Action tickets on sale now!!!

TICKETS ARE ON SALE NOW for our Love in Action Gala on Friday, Oct. 7 at Threshold Church in Weddington. We are “Unmasking The Beauty Of Kindness” at this year’s gala! Cocktail hour with appetizers: 6 p.m. Program starts: 7 p.m. Join us for an evening full of dancing and […]
August 29, 2022

Flower Power!

We know there’s power in kindness … and flowers!! Thanks to our friends at Trader Joe’s-Charlotte, NC , we’ve recently been able to giveaway flower bouquets along with free groceries at some of our evening food pantries. The location of the flower power changes so as many people as possible […]
August 23, 2022

Serving together! Volunteer groups welcome!

Many hands make light work…as the saying goes. That’s definitely been the case around Common Heart the last few weeks as we’ve welcomed groups from several churches including Amazing Grace Lutheran Church, Elevation Church, Sardis Baptist Church and Weddington United Methodist Church.  Thanks to these volunteers our conference room was repainted, ceiling tiles were replaced, […]
August 15, 2022

Diapers Needed!!

There are several recent Getting Ahead graduates and two current participants who are in need of diapers, especially sizes newborn, 5 & 6. We’ve added some to our Amazon Wish List if you’d like to purchase some. Our Wish List: https://a.co/6xFpukW Remember, when you shop off our wish list all […]
August 9, 2022

Mark your calendar! Love in Action Gala Friday, Oct. 7

Mark your calendar!!! We are “Unmasking The Beauty Of Kindness” at this year’s Love in Action Gala! Join us on Friday, Oct. 7 from 6-10 p.m. for an evening full of dancing and fun complete with a masquerade ball-theme including dinner, silent auction, raffle, and music. We’ll also be presenting […]
August 3, 2022

Welcome, Ryan!

We’re so excited to introduce you to a new member of our team: Ryan Kolbe, Volunteer Engagement Leader (around the office we just call him Kolbe). He’s the guy you’ll talk to if you want to set up a group volunteer opportunity or have questions about signing up. You’ll see […]
July 19, 2022

Volunteers create special dietary needs section

In the spring, we started seeing more and more people donating food back to us. Strange, right? Well, some of our neighbors who frequent our pantries are challenged by health issues that require special foods. Thanks to friends like you, boxes of food are now being delivered specifically based on these special […]
July 13, 2022

WAITING LIST ALERT!!!

For the first time in a very long time, we have a waiting list of food insecure neighbors with barriers to attending our pantries. There are several opportunities for volunteers to be a lifeline for families monthly in the Monroe & Marshville areas! (Bilingual Spanish speakers also needed for some […]
July 6, 2022

A Getting Ahead Story: Discovering food pantries

Shortly after starting her Getting Ahead journey, Sarah Schfield discovered a valuable resource to help provide her children with nutritious meals: Common Heart’s food pantries!! A single Mom of two, Sarah – who’s a Russian native – said she had never even heard of a food pantry and didn’t know […]
June 30, 2022

Hunger Doesn’t Take a Vacation!

A letter from Executive Director Keith Adams. “Thank God for your pantries. My food stamps were cut from $350 last year to just $16 now. You are a real lifeline for my family.” – “Dot,” a wife and mother of 3 young children I’ve been looking forward to a brief summer […]
June 27, 2022

Speaking kindness

We heard a VERY special story from one of the volunteers at our Union UMC food pantry last week. In his own words: “A car pulled up with a young man in the back seat that was 5 1/2 years old. He talked with me about the stages of the […]
June 20, 2022

Unexpected kindness during tough times

Last week one of our Cupboard Ally volunteers, Kim, had to step down because with rising prices, she needed to pick up extra hours at work. That meant no free Saturdays for food delivery. Another Ally volunteer began visiting the neighbors Kim had served. When he visited David he gave him […]
June 14, 2022

‘Very grateful’ the vet clinic was here

“We are very grateful. There’s no way we could do this without you guys.” That was the response from one of our Getting Ahead graduates at last weekend’s free veterinary clinic with her 3 dogs who were there for treatment. Her daughter, a current GA participant, was also there with […]
June 10, 2022

Welcome, Jeff!

We’re so thrilled to introduce you to another amazing addition to our team, Jeff Gardner, Partner Engagement Leader. Jeff is a retired pastor and former Common Heart board member who has been a fan, supporter, and donor throughout the past 16 years! He retired in 2021 from Threshold Church in […]
June 3, 2022

‘Getting Ahead saved my life’

When Tacara Howard walked into her first Getting Ahead group session she was “heavy hearted.” Still grieving the loss of her Mom, she had just gotten out of a bad relationship, was homeless, unemployed and sleeping in her car. This single Mom of two boys, ages 9 & 14, said […]
June 3, 2022

On World Bicycle Day, see how you can help by donating your old bike!

It’s World Bicycle Day! What a perfect time to highlight a local resource you may not know about where you can donate used adult sized bicycles for a great cause … helping our neighbors! This guest blog is from Tom Williamson of Ride Again Bicycle Ministry. My name is Tom […]
June 1, 2022

Join us June 18 at Juneteenth celebration in Marshville!

We’re SO excited to be a sponsor & participant at this year’s Juneteenth celebration in downtown Marshville on Saturday June 18!! Check out all the cool things that’ll be happening…and be sure to swing by our booth and say HI! Event runs from 10 a.m.- 2 p.m. and includes live […]
May 31, 2022

Pop-Up Shop Saturday!

SATURDAY!!! We’ve rescheduled our Pop-Up Shop for Saturday (June 4) and are excited to host it INSIDE our Indian Trail office in the nice, cool air-conditioning! 10 a.m.- 2 p.m. 116 Business Park Drive, suite A, Indian Trail Drop by for some AMAZING bargains like: -$1 women’s clothing (sizes XS-3X!)-$3 […]
May 20, 2022

‘Kindness, gentle humor & great expertise’

Common Heart volunteers file 515 tax returns … with kindness! When Wendy arrived for her tax appointment at Common Heart she was distraught and almost in tears. The 78-year-old grandmother did her own taxes last year (incorrectly) and she didn’t know how to fix the problem let alone how to […]
May 19, 2022

You can help: Getting Ahead graduate needs vehicle repair

UPDATE: Thanks to your donations, this need has been met! It’s been a couple years since Desiree has been in our Getting Ahead economic empowerment group but she’s still using the skills she learned. Since GA, she was able to negotiate a raise (twice!) at her current home health care […]
May 17, 2022

SATURDAY!! Retro Run 5K & 80s concert!

We’re racing towards Saturday (May 21) and our 1980s-themed Retro Run 5K fundraiser and really need your help in several ways!! Register to run OR Walk! Join us at Chestnut Square Park in Indian Trail on Saturday OR run (or walk) wherever you want and upload your results for the […]
May 17, 2022

Pop Up Shop Saturday, May 21!

We’re having another pop-up shop!! No bidding wars, just shopping! This event will be held from 3-8 p.m. this Saturday (May 21) at Chestnut Square Park in Indian Trail where we’ll be hosting our Retro Run 5K. Come for the shopping…stick around for other vendors, food trucks & a totally […]
April 29, 2022

Welcome, Michael!

We’re so thrilled to introduce you to another amazing addition to our team, Michael Hayes, Indian Trail Pantry Manager.  Michael loves serving others and that’s what attracted him to apply at Common Heart. He also serves as a part-time coordinator with our friends at the Community Shelter of Union County in […]
April 27, 2022

DIY Day: May 7 in Marshville

Join us for Common Heart’s first ever DIY (Do It Yourself) event!!FREE Hot Dog Lunch & Giveaways! Need to know about …Basic Car Maintenance?Small Engine Repair?Sewing?Food Preservation?Tire Repair? Bring the Family & Join Us for How-To Demonstrations on Basic Maintenance & Repairs. Kids welcome! Location: East Union Empowerment Center, 6022 […]
April 3, 2022

Getting Ahead grads continuing journey out of poverty

Applications being accepted for next sessions James Levee heard about Common Heart’s Getting Ahead focus/empowerment group at a mobile food pantry when he was there getting food for his family. They’re “facing some issues right now” and needed the food to be able to make ends meet, he said.  He […]
April 3, 2022

Single Mom gets $8K tax refund

Tax service success story!!!! The coordinator of our free income tax service just came bouncing into my office to tell me the GREAT news… They just got a single Mom of 3 who’s going to school to become a nurse, an $8K tax return! Talk about some happy tears! This […]
April 1, 2022

Let’s Kickstart Kindness!

A letter from Keith Adams, our Executive Director, about Kickstart Kindness, our month-long fundraising campaign that includes a matching opportunity!! During these past couple years your kindness and generosity have helped  thousands of our neighbors. Because of you thousands of children and families did not go to bed hungry! They […]
March 31, 2022

Welcome, Sarah!

Getting Ahead graduate now hired as Getting Ahead Coordinator You may recognize one of our newest employees… Sarah Kimbrough, our Getting Ahead Coordinator. Sarah is a Getting Ahead graduate who we’ve been thrilled to add to our staff!  She’s a Union County native who graduated from Parkwood High School and […]
March 24, 2022

5th annual Hunger Walk raises $40K

The results are in! Common Heart’s 5th annual Hunger Walk fundraiser drew 263 participants and raised $40,000. That’s enough to provide a week’s worth of groceries to 1,600 local hungry families! To put that in perspective, Common Heart food pantries are currently serving an average of 1,230 families each month.  […]
March 16, 2022

Volunteering is a family affair

Volunteering really can bring a family together!  Just ask one of our newest Cupboard Ally volunteers Nicole Hillery! This local attorney and her 16-year-old son, Nate, signed up to deliver groceries once a month to some of our neighbors after spending an “awesome” day together delivering Thanksgiving meals with us […]
March 1, 2022

Food Drive March 12

Our friend Kat Miller, a Re-Max Realtor, is partnering with a few other local businesses to host a food drive for Common Heart as well as a pet food drive for the Union County Humane Society. The food drive is 9:30-11:30 a.m. Saturday, March 12 at Chestnut Square Park, 320 […]
March 1, 2022

Welcome, Ginger!

We’re so excited to introduce another new member to the Common Heart team … Ginger Tucker, Empowerment Center Manager.  A native of Marshville, Ginger has spent her first weeks on the job here meeting new people and making connections in the area to spread the word about our new East […]
February 25, 2022

We love to see students serving!

We loved having this group of energetic students come serve with us recently at the Marshville food pantry warehouse!   They’re part of the Keeper Program, a local nonprofit organization that works with elementary, middle & high school students in Union County Public Schools. The students meet twice a week to […]
February 15, 2022

Adult literacy program moving to SPCC

Free community service accepting new students & volunteer tutors Our adult literacy program is on the move – to South Piedmont Community College! The college, which has supported the program since its launch in late 2019, will now house this free community service in the School of College & Career […]
February 11, 2022

‘Urgent’ needs met at our food pantries

Take steps to end local hunger by registering now for the Common Heart Hunger Walk!  Like so many of her neighbors, especially during this pandemic, “Anna” had never been to a food pantry before when she messaged us this week to ask how she could get food for her children. […]
February 11, 2022

Free vet clinic provides relief

“I’m so relieved.” That was the response from one of our Getting Ahead participants as she left last week’s free veterinary clinic with her dog, Sampson. Thanks to our new friends at The Street Dog Coalition, Sampson and about 30 other pets got free medical care including any necessary shots, […]
February 7, 2022

Welcome Riane!

Introducing our new Cupboard Ally Manager We’re excited to introduce one of our newest staff members, Riane Brownlee, who joins us in the newly created position of Cupboard Ally Manager. With the growth of this monthly food delivery program, we needed someone to focus on our Ally volunteers and the […]
January 20, 2022

Free tax service starts Jan. 25!

Proof of Covid-19 vaccine required for in-person preparation Beginning Tuesday, Jan. 25, volunteers Common Heart volunteers will once again offer free income tax service to local residents. In-person preparation will return this year with proof of Covid-19 vaccination to provide the best protection for volunteers and our neighbors. Masks will […]
January 10, 2022

Hunger Walk set for March 6

Registration now open! 5th annual event! Choose in-person or virtual option We got a Facebook message recently from “Susan,” saying she had “fallen on hard times” and wanted to know how to receive groceries from the Thursday evening pantry at Union United Methodist Church in Waxhaw. She lives close by […]
January 4, 2022

U.S. Marine pushes Mom to learn English

Dollar General grant gives boost to adult literacy program Eriberta Gonzalez of Monroe is working toward a big goal as she learns English through Common Heart’s adult literacy program: becoming an electrician.  Thanks to an $8,000 grant from the Dollar General Literacy Foundation, Eriberta and other Union County adults are […]
December 15, 2021

Tax volunteers needed

Hard to believe… but tax season is approaching! That means we’re looking for volunteers to help with our FREE income tax season to help our neighbors file their taxes. Training sessions will be held online via Zoom January 8th and 15th from 8:30 to 4:00. Interested? Email Shaleel.Johnson@CommonHeart.org or call […]
December 15, 2021

Our Christmas Wish …

A letter from our Executive Director, Keith Adams. As I think about what you and this community have done, I can say that the dream of a small revolution of kindness is happening. And Our Christmas Wish this year is to see this revolution grow exponentially in the hearts of […]
December 10, 2021

Getting Ahead graduates starting their journey out of poverty

Applications being accepted for next sessions Our Getting Ahead empowerment focus groups meet people where they are — among all types of situations. For Angie Merritt, Getting Ahead was a “safe place” to be and meet new friends as she recovers from a drug addiction.  “It was a comfortable place […]
December 8, 2021

Goal met! Adult literacy student becomes US citizen

Adult literacy volunteer John Pinnix & Yahya Hamdouni, are more than just tutor & student — they’re friends. Yaya recently invited John to attend his U.S. citizenship ceremony and John presented him with a U.S. flag for his home. The moment marked a huge accomplishment for Yahya and the completion […]
December 1, 2021

‘So kind, gracious & funny’

The neighbors who regularly attend our evening food pantries often become friends, as Pastor Brad Cunningham of Union United Methodist Church can attest. He reflects on this relationship after one of these neighbors died unexpectedly. In his own words … A week ago today I received a phone call. One […]
November 9, 2021

Hamming it Up in 2021!

Did you hear?! Common Heart is ‘hamming it up’ this year due to turkey shortages and will be giving away hams instead of turkeys with Thanksgiving baskets. Due to the shortages and rising grocery costs this year we’ve also had to increase to a $40 donation providing the whole Thanksgiving […]
November 9, 2021

You could WIN money all year long!

Did you hear about the Cash Calendar??? It’s an awesome fundraiser with our friends at Rotary Club of Matthews where you have the chance to WIN cash all year long! Common Heart is just one of the many local nonprofits who will benefit from this fundraiser. Every Monday, Wednesday & […]
October 29, 2021

Getting Ahead graduate cooks up business on her path to stability

Getting Ahead success story alert!  We’re so proud of our Getting Ahead graduate Sharon Crowder who has recently opened a business following her passion: cooking.  Level Up Spicy Kreationz Southern Kountry Komfort Food & Spice is a full-service catering business and Sharon also makes and sells her spices separately (43 […]
October 29, 2021

Introducing Nelson!

Common Heart welcomes new Operations Director We’re so excited to introduce you to our new Operations Director, Nelson Hardin! To say Nelson has a passion for helping people is an understatement. In high school, he helped run a food pantry in the D.C.-area feeding the homeless every afternoon after he […]
October 26, 2021

‘New way to serve’

Howard Williams is only in his third month as a Cupboard Ally volunteer and already sees some friendships blossoming with the neighbors he’s delivering groceries to. He’s serving two widowed women, both elderly — one just celebrated her 90th Birthday! “The day we first met she was sharing about her […]
October 22, 2021

Great Turkey Countdown is here!

Hey November is almost here and you know what that means?? It’s time to rustle up some turkeys! It is time for ….The …. Great …. Turkey …. Countdown!!  2021 GOAL: 1,500 Turkeys for 1,500 Families! Can we do it again this year??? 1,500 families blessed by the generosity of this […]
October 20, 2021

Free workshop: Intro to Financial Literacy

Are you looking to take control of your finances? We’re partnering with South Piedmont Community College to host this three-session, in person workshop. FREE and open to the public! Masks required. Workshop will be held on the following Saturdays from 1:30-5:30 p.m. at our East Union Empowerment Center in Marshville. […]
October 13, 2021

Last chance … make your Love in Action gift today!

This year’s Love In Action was a shining example of how our community has pulled together to meet the needs of our neighbors who are struggling to put food on their tables. But, we are not done yet….. So far, we have raised $41,843 towards our $60,000 goal. There is still time […]
September 30, 2021

9-year-old twins collect 500+ boxes of cereal

Fourth graders Amisha & Ronak Ghelani know what it means to put #loveinaction. The 9-year-old twins from South Charlotte collected more than 500 boxes of cereal for Common Heart’s food pantries after seeing the cereal shelf was almost empty when they were volunteering recently at our Marshville location.  The idea […]
September 23, 2021

Ruth’s ‘ah ha’ moment

Getting Ahead graduate Ruth Perez says her “ah ha moment” during the Money & Me class hit on a topic that she loves — ice cream. Regular trips to a local ice cream shop with her 10-member household (of three generations!) is expensive, but before taking this class they wouldn’t […]
September 15, 2021

‘What do I do?’

When Kenyatta Moore heard about Getting Ahead she was in the middle of what she describes as a “perfect storm.” The mother of two from Waxhaw was full-time caregiver for her mother, taking college courses, helping her daughter with autism complete virtual school and she had just lost her customer […]
September 13, 2021

Rising to the challenges by putting Love in Action!

This year we are investing in people – people not only impacted by this pandemic, but the circumstances and barriers of life in poverty. Here’s a letter from our Executive Director, Keith Adams. Thank you for being a big part of this small revolution of kindness! Thousands of our neighbors have […]
September 2, 2021

Changing poverty into prosperity

After years of struggling to keep up with medical bills following major heart and kidney issues, Marie “Rosie” Kreutzer was in trouble. Food always seemed to be running low and this self-described “positive person” was emotionally and physically drained.  She was in line at a Common Heart drive-thru mobile food […]
August 26, 2021

‘What Getting Ahead means to me …’

2020 Getting Ahead graduate Sharon Crowder shares about her experience in last year’s focus group. Now as a member of our Advocates for Change group, Sharon is cheering on the new graduates as she operates a new online shop. Thanks for sharing your thoughts, Sharon! My experience in Getting Ahead […]
August 17, 2021

Safety first! New volunteer guidelines

Summer’s winding down and we hope you’re enjoying these last days of vacation. As high school and college students head back to school (good luck!!) we’ve got weekday gaps to fill in our volunteer family.The opportunities include sorting incoming donations, packing food for our neighbors, working at our mobile pantries […]
August 17, 2021

Poverty Simulation Cancelled

We’re sad to report that due to the recent uptick in the number of COVID cases our Poverty Simulation on Aug. 21 has been cancelled. Stay tuned for a rescheduled date! If your church, school or business would like to host a Poverty Simulation led by our Advocates for Change group […]
August 3, 2021

Aug. 17: Getting Ahead Graduation

Join us in-person, via zoom or Facebook Live on August 17 from 6:30-8pm for the graduation of our third Getting Ahead cohort of 2021!! Their theme is “Wake Up & Change Poverty into Prosperity.” The dress is casual – or pajamas!! Time for a little fun and celebration because this […]
August 3, 2021

Aug. 21: Advocates for Change Poverty Simulation

UPDATE: This event has been postponed … stay tuned for a new date. Walk for a little while in your neighbor’s shoes as our Advocates for Change group hosts a poverty simulation on Saturday, Aug. 21 from 10 a.m.- 1 p.m. at First Presbyterian Church, 302 East Windsor St., in […]
July 29, 2021

What Dad remembers …

After seeing what his daughter-in-law Deb had started and watching his son Keith get involved too, it didn’t take Frank Adams too long to start helping to feed his neighbors. When he started volunteering, Common Heart had just become an official nonprofit and was renting a small storage room in […]
July 23, 2021

East Union now open!!

Did you see us on TV??? Huge thank you to WSOC-TV for coming out today to cover our ribbon cutting and grand opening last week at our new East Union Empowerment Center in Marshville. This new space includes a food pantry warehouse to better serve our neighbors and classroom space […]
July 2, 2021

FREE Workshop: Money & Me

If you look at the amount of money coming in and look at your expenses and you just don’t know how to make it work … then this 6 hour introductory course is for you! It’s designed specifically for families challenged by poverty. Join us Friday, July 16 from 10-11:30 […]
July 1, 2021

Humble Beginnings …

It’s our Birthday month!! July 2021 marks 15 years of serving together at Common Heart! We’ve got a lot of fun things planned to celebrate this month and we’re so excited to share some stories as we take a peek at what Common Heart has looked like through the years. […]
June 29, 2021

East Union grand opening celebration!

All are invited to the grand opening of Common Heart’s new East Union Empowerment Center, 6022 Marshville Boulevard, in Marshville from 11 a.m. to 1 p.m. on Thursday, July 15.  The Union County Chamber of Commerce will host a ribbon cutting at 11 a.m. and Common Heart will provide a […]
June 24, 2021

Dynamic duo graduate from Getting Ahead and earn GEDs in same week!

When Ruth Perez signed up for Common Heart’s Getting Ahead focus group it was during a very stressful time. Her Mom was in the hospital with COVID, she was working toward her GED, and her family had been without water for three months because they couldn’t pay the bill. She […]
June 17, 2021

Volunteer vies for ‘Mr. Fitness’ title and $20K donation

Common Heart has the chance to WIN $20,000 thanks to a pledge from one of our own volunteers who is participating in an online fitness contest. Long-time volunteer and personal trainer, Emmett Ballard, is competing to be named Mr. Fitness in Muscle & Fitness magazine. The grand prize is $20,000 […]
June 3, 2021

Free tax service success despite pandemic

Our free income tax service volunteers filed 282 income tax returns this year despite challenges from the pandemic. The free service assisted residents in receiving $463,432 in total refunds and saved them an estimated total of $42,300 in tax return fees.  This was the 10th year Common Heart has offered […]
May 26, 2021

Getting Ahead virtual graduation June 9

Please join us (virtually!) Wednesday, June 9 at 6:30 p.m. as we celebrate our 10 Getting Ahead graduates! These hard-working neighbors are starting their journeys out of poverty and into stability and we’re so proud of all the accomplishments they’ve made so far! You’ll hear stories about their experiences and […]
April 23, 2021

Donations matched thru April 30

Have you heard??? Some friends have created the Kickstart Kindness match, and through April 30 your special gift will be matched dollar for dollar, and new monthly recurring donations will be TRIPLE matched! WOW!!! As of Friday, April 23 we have just 7 DAYS LEFT and $9,684 to go in […]
April 23, 2021

Common Heart Retro Run May 29

1980s-themed 5K to be held in-person with virtual option Registration is open for the 2nd annual Common Heart Retro Run 5K fundraiser.  This 1980s-themed run/walk event will be held in-person Saturday, May 29 at Chestnut Square Park in Indian Trail with COVID safety precautions in place. A virtual option is […]
April 5, 2021

New pantry opens in Monroe!

EXCITING NEWS!!! We’re adding another traditional food pantry! Starting today (Monday, April 5), every Monday from 7-8 p.m. our friends at Benton Heights Presbyterian Church (2701 Concord Hwy.) in Monroe will be hosting a drive-thru food pantry! That means we’ll have two pantries operating at the same time on Mondays […]
March 24, 2021

Delivering groceries & hope!

When Common Heart volunteer Brian Cross started delivering groceries last year to “Brenda,” each month as part of our Cupboard Allies program he wasn’t sure what to expect. But it didn’t take long before they were sharing laughs and photos of their kids. This unique program is creating supportive friendships […]
March 24, 2021

Hunger Walk raises $45K!

The results are in! Common Heart’s 4th annual Hunger Walk fundraiser drew about 200 participants and raised $45,333. That’s enough to provide a week’s worth of groceries to 1,813 struggling local families! To put that in perspective, Common Heart food pantries are currently serving an average of 1,400 families each […]
February 10, 2021

Boy Scouts collect 5,741 pounds of food for hungry neighbors

Common Heart’s food pantries received 5,741 pounds of nonperishable foodthanks to four local Boy Scout troops who chose the nonprofit as the recipient for their annualScouting for Food collection. That’s enough to provide a week’s worth of food to 155 local struggling families! The national food & fund drive is […]
February 5, 2021

‘It’s weeks until payday … they’re struggling’

Take steps to end local hunger by registering now for the Common Heart Hunger Walk!  Like so many of her neighbors, especially during this pandemic, “Nancy” had never been to a food pantry before she came to one of Common Heart’s drive-thru pantries last week. Her husband is working but […]
January 28, 2021

‘No act of kindness is too small’

“Seeing all of the teachers, assistants, and support staff come through the line reminded me that we always have an opportunity to make people feel appreciated. No act of kindness is too small. Everyone deserves to feel like what they do and who they are matters, especially during challenging times.”  […]
January 19, 2021

Be an advocate…Become an Ally!

Have you ever thought “I’d like to get more involved but I don’t know how?” The Cupboard Ally program might be for you! Our friends Pastor Quintell & his wife, Christie of Multiply Church in Monroe, have been going “above & beyond” recently to help a neighbor in need who […]
January 12, 2021

Hunger Walk is going virtual!

While we can’t safely gather in-person this year, you can still take steps to end local hunger! The VIRTUAL Common Heart Hunger Walk is a great chance to join in solidarity to raise awareness about hunger in our community and raise funds to support Common Heart’s food pantry programs. On Sunday, March 7 go for […]
December 7, 2020

Our Christmas Wish

Written by Common Heart Executive Director Keith Adams… Dear friend,    2020 has been a year, hasn’t it?! It’s been challenging for so many reasons, but it’s also been a year when we have come together serving the needs of local families facing hardships. This year has shown … we are […]
December 1, 2020

Getting Ahead & Staying There

This article appears in the digital magazine “Thanks & Giving” presented by the Carolina Weekly Newspaper Group in honor of GivingTuesday on Dec. 1. See page 12. Thanks & Giving Magazine 2020 by Charlotte Media Group – issuu #CMGGivingTuesday Our Economic Empowerment programs were given a big boost as we […]
November 16, 2020

Give More Than Thanks

Brian Cross, a Common Heart Board Member, shares his thoughts leading up to Saturday’s 14th annual Great Turkey Countdown…our biggest delivery day of the year!  How are you showing your gratitude this Thanksgiving season?  At Thanksgiving, we gather at the table with our families, break bread and share our joys.  […]
October 29, 2020

Great Turkey Countdown is here!

Canned goods, frozen turkeys needed to reach goal of serving 1,500 families in need Calling all turkeys!  Local nonprofit Common Heart is seeking donations to provide 1,500 frozen turkeys with all the fixin’s to 1,500 local families in need so they can prepare their own Thanksgiving feasts. It’s the 14th […]
October 29, 2020

Have you ever wanted to help guide someone out of poverty?

Common Heart online workshop starts Nov. 8 Executive business planner and Common Heart volunteer Peter Ochs has a passion for seeing people succeed in life. That’s why, he said, he’s had such a great experience serving as an Ally for Getting Ahead graduate, Cori, who’s on her journey out of […]
October 21, 2020

Common Heart volunteer pens children’s book

You can bid on a copy in our Common Heart Auction Group! When Common Heart volunteer Rich Scalea was visiting the New Jersey boardwalk enjoying a Nathan’s hot dog he just happened to see a woman walk by with a Dachshund (aka “weiner dog”) named Nathan. (Get it?!? Ha ha!) […]
October 16, 2020

Love in Action to support expansion of services in eastern Union County

Moser Group, Passionate Paws kick off fundraising blitz Since the pandemic hit locally, Stephen & Dr. Susan Bonilla had been looking for ways to give back but weren’t sure how. As the owners of Passionate Paws Animal Hospital in Waxhaw, they enjoy sponsoring community events, but those were cancelled. Hosting […]
September 3, 2020

Dollar General grant boosts adult literacy program

Dion Rymer didn’t know how his family — both locally and those still in the British Virgin Islands — would react when they found out he enrolled in Common Heart’s adult literacy program to improve his reading and writing skills. He describes their reactions in two words: Very proud.  The […]