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Thrivent clients put generosity in action: Summer 2023

Thrivent Action Teams help clients make a difference in their communities.

Garden project grows

Bakersfield, California

Sometimes it’s all about timing. As Cheryl Nieuwkoop was leading a Thrivent Action Team to do a garden project at Keepers Transformation House, the residents there were taking cooking classes from the Edible Schoolyard Kern County.

Combine those two events and what do you get? A salsa garden planted in two raised beds at a shelter that has a mission of restoring and empowering women.

Edible Schoolyard donated the seedlings. A gardening center donated potting soil. Nieuwkoop’s husband, Terry, made two raised beds. The team’s seed money helped purchase gardening supplies.

Nieuwkoop helped the residents at Keepers Transformation House line then fill the gardens with soil, plant the seedlings and put the trellis in place for the tomatoes.

The residents are now tending the gardens and preparing for use of the vegetable goodness.

“It’s a nice feeling to be able to give and for Thrivent to provide the seed money to kickstart the project,” Nieuwkoop says. “It gives me incentive to keep finding ways to fill a need and be a disciple.”


Pinkleball Warriors win

Peoria, Illinois

A breast cancer support group offers an opportunity for women with cancer and survivors to keep their minds off their diagnosis and keep their bodies healthy—by learning to play pickleball. The group, called the Pinkleball Warriors, meets twice monthly to support one another and play. Deborah Seyller, who is part of the group, created a Thrivent Action Team to help with the costs of equipment and court time.

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Way to help kids cope

Lakewood, Colorado

Cliff Dawson wanted to provide stuffed animals for first responders to give to children during an emergency or stressful situation. He created a Thrivent Action Team to gather new and gently used stuffed animals at his church, Concordia Lutheran, and in the community. The seed money helped purchase items to promote the event. The team has collected 205 animals.


Building more than homes

Fort Myers, Florida

Sharon Kemmerer’s Thrivent Action Team, with members from Maryland, Michigan and Florida, went to Fort Myers to help after Hurricane Ian. They gutted walls and floors, saving the exterior of homes in a senior community. The team, called Passion Under Construction, volunteered for two weeks through the nonprofit Inspiritus Disaster Relief. They worked alongside more than 100 college students doing disaster relief on spring break.


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