Washington, D.C. based Family Missions received the Freedom Works Award sponsored by House Majority Leader Dick Armey. This award is given annually to "the most active service group in the country motivated by personal commitment and desire to make the world a better place rather than personal gain or government funding." Following are excerpts from press releases about this event:
"On Thursday, March 5, House Majority Leader Dick Armey presented his Freedom Works Award to the D.C. Center of the Family Missions for their exemplary service in assisting homeless shelters and soup kitchens in the D.C. area. Armey formally presented the award to the Family Missions at a ceremony in the U.S. Capitol. D.C. Center Director Cindy Thomson and several teen volunteers were on hand to accept it for the group."
Freedom Works Award to Family Missions
Delivered on the House floor March 5, 1998
"Mr. Speaker, I am honored today to present the Freedom Works Award to the Family Missions of the D.C. area. I established the Freedom Works Award to celebrate freedom by recognizing individuals and groups who promote personal responsibility instead of reliance on the government.
"The Family Missions is a privately-funded charitable religious organization made up of families who believe their Christian duty is best served by assisting and operating homeless shelters, soup kitchens, and offering other human services assistance within their communities. Their activities have ranged from delivering two tons of milk weekly for the last four years to D.C. area soup kitchens, to serving as Red Cross deputies in Florida during the aftermath of Hurricane Andrew. It really warms my heart to see these young people doing all they can to help people in need. The Family Missions volunteers also help teenage runaways and shelters for battered women.
"A sincere calling to service of others and the personal reward such activity brings motivates them, not because they were drafted by AmeriCorps or even because they were trying to meet some local community or state mandated requirement for charity. These young people exemplify the kind of genuine service and sacrifice I had in mind when I conceived of the Freedom Works Award.
"This organization has taken on these difficult tasks and more, without receiving a single penny of federal assistance. The success of the Family Missions is based on a simple belief that ‘There is no greater love for our fellow man than to be willing to lay our life down for them.’"
Past recipients have included Dallas Cowboys running back Emmit Smith (for his work in educating at-risk youth); "Touched By An Angel" producers; Omega Boys Club of San Francisco (for their work in rescuing inner city children from the influences of gangs) and Cornerstone Schools of Detroit, Michigan (for their cutting-edge approach to education).
Thanks to the generosity of the Embassy Dairy, each week the D.C. Family Missions’ Milk for Many volunteers pick up and deliver approximately 2000 gallons of fresh milk to Washington D.C.’s shelters for the homeless, for battered women and children, and other poor and needy families.
Gail Cline, executive director of the Serve Shelter in Manassas, Virginia writes, "Family Missions are among those who understand what the disadvantaged need. Since we never have enough milk, even for the children who constitute half of our clients, we are always amazed and delighted to see you arrive with what we need most."
Distributing food in Homestead, Florida after Hurricane Andrew.
Click below to see letters of recommendation written for "Milk for Many":
American Red Cross
Arlington Food Assistance Center
DC Central Kitchen
Mongromery County Government
The Salvation Army