LITTLE ROCK, ARK. (March 17, 2016) – The United Methodist Foundation of Arkansas is announcing an anonymous gift of $25,000 from a Little Rock family to help renovate the facility at Canvas Community Church at 1111 West 7th St., Little Rock, to house clinics for a homeless healthcare initiative led by the UAMS College of Nursing.
“The clinics will save lives,” said Rev. Carter Ferguson, Senior Pastor at Canvas Community Church. “But they also allow Canvas Community to do things to love our friends on the street in ways that we were simply never able to do before because of lack of resources.”
Nursing faculty and students coordinated through the College of Nursing will hold clinics weekly after the renovation is complete, including education and screenings for mental health, women’s health issues, general health promotion topics, and foot care. The clinics will offer educational experiences for UAMS nursing students while potentially leading to a reduction in unreimbursed medical care associated with the homeless population, according to the College of Nursing.
“Providing much-needed healthcare to the Little Rock homeless population is an effort that follows the footsteps of Christ,” said Jim Argue Jr., UMFA President and CEO. “We are pleased to have a role in making healthcare services available to our brothers and sisters on the street.”
Canvas Community, a United Methodist congregation, has been working with homeless individuals for six years, providing worship services, fellowship, food, clothing and more. The idea for the clinics grew out of a ministry to provide women’s hygiene products to those on the street.
“Our intent is to continuously expand our programming and deepen our medical involvement, which has already grown beyond women’s health before it began,” Rev. Ferguson said. “We appreciate and thank the United Methodist Foundation for an additional grant of $20,750 which will allow us to bring our facilities up to medical code so that the clinics can begin.”
The United Methodist Foundation of Arkansas manages $145 million in endowment funds and other charitable assets that benefit local churches and other United Methodist ministries. UMFA is one of the largest United Methodist Foundations in the country. Founded in 1963, UMFA is responsible for over 750 funds that support United Methodist ministries.