Bee Creek United Methodist Church

I am applying forAction Support Grant
FUNDS WILL BE USED TO:Maintain/expand current ministry
Name of OrganizationBee Creek United Methodist Church
Address3000 Bee Creek Rd
Spicewood, Texas 78669
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Contact PersonSusan Bienkowski
TitleDirector of Outreach and Recreation
EmailEmail hidden; Javascript is required.
Phone(512) 264-2225
Amount requested3000.00
Explain connection to The United Methodists Church

Bee Creek is a United Methodist Church.

How many volunteers are involved?100
How many staff members?12
Have you explored opportunities to collaborate with other United Methodist Churches to work toward your mission?*
  • no
Congregational support

Congregational Support:
Bee Creek UMC congregational support for this ministry has been amazing! The Farmacy project is such an enormous undertaking, and Bee Creek has been the primary supporter financially and physically throughout. All of the supplies for the beds, irrigation system, fence, electrical needs - essentially everything needed to get the garden up and running were provided from personal giving of congregants and Bee Creek UMC.. All of the labor needed (putting in an irrigation system using rainwater runoff from the roof along with a Cistern to collect and store the rainwater, building the raised garden beds, putting up an 8ft deer-proof fence around the garden, and planting and maintaining of beds) was done by volunteers from the church, licensed contractors and by scout troops sponsored by the church.

How does your mission fulfill the purpose of the grant you are requesting?

"Bee Creek is a community of imperfect people who are transformed by the perfect love of God and change the world together." Bee Creek UMC mission statement

The Farmacy Community Garden is serving real needs in the low-income population of Spicewood and changing lives by providing fresh, organic produce at no cost to them. In 2020, over 2100 pounds of produce was donated from the Farmacy to Helping Hands Crisis Ministry of Spicewood and Camp R.A.T.T. (Responsible Adult Transition Town for the homeless). That was double the amount of produce the Farmacy was able to donate in 2019.

The pandemic that began in March of 2020 left many more people out of work and struggling to buy food. So, in June of 2020, Bee Creek staff members and congregants got together and decided that expanding the Farmacy Community Garden, (at that time located at the Spicewood Library but funded and staffed by BCUMC), was of the utmost importance. One month later in July 2020, Bee Creek had 67 volunteers of all ages break ground on a new, larger Farmacy located on an unused portion of the church property.

Our goal for 2021 is to increase our production so we may provide more people with healthy organic produce, to help them take control of their health. Additionally, the Farmacy provides volunteer and learning opportunities for community members of all ages.

How many individuals will be served by the funds requested?190

The Farmacy supplies fruits and vegetables to the Helping Hands Crisis Ministry which is located in the 78669 zip code and to Camp R.A.T.T. homeless center in east Austin. This produce is provided for folks that are experiencing a difficult financial time in their lives, who might not be able to afford healthy food options. The population being served by Helping Hand is predominately white (~75%), 50 years or older, who are taking care of kids and grandkids. There has been an increase in homeless individuals living in old campers or tents in the area reaching out for assistance. The homeless individuals we help are mostly under 40 years of age.

Funding Partner Amount
Congregational Donors 10,282.95
Grant history and reporting

Grant history and reporting:
Bee Creek received an Action Support Grant in 2020 for $3,000.00. The funds provided by that grant purchased materials for the new garden site, specifically our water tanks that serve as a Cistern, collecting rainwater off the gym roof to supply water to the garden. Also, the grant money allowed us to purchase soil and vegetable plants for both garden sites.

We broke ground on the new garden located on the church property in July of 2020 and had our first harvest in the new garden in November 2020. During the construction and growing phase of the new garden, Bee Creek operated both garden locations in order to continue providing fresh produce to those who have come to depend on it.

Phase 1 of the garden is complete – thirty 16ft by 4ft raised beds, a rainwater collection system to economically provide a clean water source to the garden, and a deer-proof fence. We celebrate that during a tumultuous year of uncertainty we were able to work together with various groups in our community (Boy and Girl Scouts, Bloom to Grow, National Charity League 360 Austin) to help those in need.

Phase 2 of our plan includes 16 children's garden beds and 8 beds for those who are disabled. Phase 2 will also include an educational program offered to children in the community through our Bee Loved Pre-school and our Sunday and after-school children's programs.

Other Sources of funds Amount
Community Partners Amount
Lowes, Paleface Feed & Garden Supply, Cuvee Coffee, Central Texas Landscape, Green Earth Landscape, Faulk Construction 750.00
Ministry BudgetMinistry.docx
Supporting DocumentsFarmacy-ExpenseDonation-breakdown.docx
Comments or additional information

Bee Creek UMC is grateful for the opportunity to apply for this grant. Thank you for your time. " We Rise By Lifting Others."