Nonprofit News

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  • | 12:00 p.m. March 23, 2010
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Highlighting Jacksonville’s Philanthropic Community

As our community continues to face a tight economy and shrinking budgets, the Daily Record has established this page that will each week chronicle the efforts of local nonprofit organizations. Bailey Publishing & Communications invites all members of the local nonprofit community to submit news, announcements, success stories and any other information they feel would be of interest to our readers. E-mail to: [email protected].

We also encourage our readers to become more aware of the needs of these worthy organizations as they try to continue to provide valuable services with reduced resources.

Shelter seeks volunteers, donations to help with meal

The City Rescue Mission is hosting an Easter dinner for the homeless in Northeast Florida. The downtown shelter is expected to serve more than 600 meals.

“Easter is a holiday that holds a special place in our hearts,” said Patrick Hayle, executive director of the mission. “Through our dinner we are able to share this important time with people in need in our community, giving them hope, a warm meal and a place to go on a day that is usually focused around family and friends.”

The dinner will be served from 11:30 a.m. to 1:30 p.m. on Easter, April 4, at City Rescue Mission’s shelter at 234 W. State St. with the help of at least 100 volunteers. Anyone interested in volunteering is asked to contact City Rescue Mission’s volunteer coordinator at 421-5157.

“We are so thankful for the support of our community,” said Hayle. “We do not receive any local, state or federal funding to help the homeless. It is because of your donations that we are able to bring hope to such a large number of people.”

City Rescue Mission is also accepting donations to help fund Easter Dinner. To contribute, visit

City Rescue Mission is a nonprofit, faith-based organization that has provided help to the homeless and needy in Jacksonville and Northeast Florida since 1946. In addition to providing emergency services, the organization offers programs including the New Day Workforce and LifeBuilders.

Culinary student awarded scholarship

The North Florida Hotel & Lodging Association awarded the Claude Collins Hospitality Scholarship to Kittima Begier, a student in the Culinary Arts and Hospitality Program at Florida State College at Jacksonville. Begier has maintained at 4.0 grade point average while working three part-time jobs. After graduation from FSCJ, Begier plans to become a personal chef, start her own catering company and possibly one day operate a bed and breakfast.

Association President David Mariotti and scholarship committee chair Bob Mark presented the scholarship to Begier, who has earned President’s List and Dean’s List honors while attending FSCJ.

Begier won the 13th Annual Jacksonville Chamber of Commerce Mandarin Council’s 2009 Chili Cookoff.

The Claude Collins Hospitality Scholarship is awarded twice annually to college students pursuing further education in the hospitality industry. To qualify, students must have a 2.5 GPA or higher and be enrolled in a hospitality or related field at a local college, university or accredited vocational school.

The deadline to apply for the fall semester scholarship is July 1.  Students interested in applying can visit for more details and to download an application.

The North Florida Hotel & Lodging Association serves its membership with a lobbying voice at local and state levels on issues affecting the hotel industry in Duval, St. Johns, Nassau and Clay counties. It also serves its membership and the community with resources, education, scholarships and networking opportunities. 

Contractor helps local family

LandSouth Construction partnered with Builders Care to help a local family in need of extensive home improvements and repairs. LandSouth Construction’s team spent a day to provide the Mandarin-area family with a new roof, replacement of several plumbing fixtures, landscaping improvements and other repairs.

“Part of our companywide initiative in 2010 is to give back to the community in meaningful ways and utilize our team members’ skills to help those in need,” said James Pyle, president and CEO of LandSouth Construction. “As a locally owned general contractor, LandSouth is a good fit for the kind of work Builders Care needs and I hope this relationship continues to grow.”

Builders Care’s video crew was onsite the day of the repairs and footage from the project can be seen on by searching for LandSouth Construction.

Builders Care is a not-for-profit construction organization founded by the Northeast Florida Builders Association, providing construction services to low-income elderly and disabled people who cannot afford the services by traditional means.

Typically, emergency repairs are made that could pose a threat to a family’s health or safety, such as structural problems, water damage, plumbing and heating system failures, general bathroom and kitchen repairs, faulty electrical systems and other dangerous conditions. More information about Builders Care is available online at    

Shop and support wildlife sactuary

The Whole Foods Market in Jacksonville selected the Wildlife Sanctuary at the University of North Florida as a beneficiary of its “Community 5 Percent Day,” scheduled from 8 a.m. to 9 p.m. March 31 at its store at 10601 San Jose Blvd. in Mandarin.

Customers can support the University’s Wildlife Sanctuary by shopping that day. On designated days throughout the year, 5 percent of the day’s net sales are donated to local nonprofit organizations. “The Whole Foods Market strives to support charitable causes and community organizations on a regular basis throughout the year,” said Neda Yazdanpanah, spokesperson for the Whole Foods Market Florida Region. “We chose the Wildlife Sanctuary because of the many ways they give back to the public and the earth.”

The UNF Wildlife Sanctuary includes the Robert W. Loftin Nature Trails, which are five trails that traverse more than 500 acres of natural habitat and are open to the public. The sanctuary also includes the Sawmill Slough Preserve, which is the preservation of 365 acres of diverse habitat on UNF property. This designation encompasses part of the nature trails system and protects the lands in perpetuity for research and education.

The John M. Golden Environmental Educational Pavilion is in the Wildlife Sanctuary and serves as the campus headquarters for environmental education programs for students from preschool to high school. It is also the home of UNF’s summer EcoCamp, a day camp for children to learn about the natural environment and local wildlife.

“UNF has one of the best natural assets of any Florida university and The Wildlife Sanctuary is thrilled to be the beneficiary of Whole Foods Market Community 5 Percent Day,” said Becky Purser, director of UNF’s Department of Recreation. “The event will benefit the entire Wildlife Sanctuary and will help support the upkeep for its infrastructure, educational signage and programs as well as the new VERB Garden Project.”

The VERB (vegetable and herb) garden project was made possible by a contribution from local business leader and UNF alumnus Bruce Ogier, president and CEO of Capital Analysts of Jacksonville, and his brother, Frederick Ogier. The Ogiers have established the first sustainable organic garden at the university.

The garden project, which only uses certified organic seeds, is tended by UNF students.

The mission of the UNF Wildlife Sanctuary is to support university objectives by offering experiences that cultivate awareness of the natural world. The nature trail system on campus opened to the public in 1973 and by 1977 was recognized as National Recreation Trails by the Department of Interior.

For more information about the UNF Wildlife Sanctuary and the programs and services it offers call 620-1810 or go online to



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