Wrapped in Love: Thrivent Financial Reaches Out to Kids in Need


Love comes in many forms, but it is always a gift. On Thursday, October 27, 2016, the local Thrivent Financial office gave 731 new winter coats to the students of Merry Oaks International Academy in Charlotte, NC through the Wrapped in Love program. With the help of Operation Warm, Project 658 and the Jireh Prep Warriors football team, these children will be able to get to school, play outside and maybe even build their first snow people.

Community Need

“The Community Board’s mission is to find a great need and give back locally, while engaging our members and friends of Thrivent to live generously,” says Adrienne Beatty, the marketing manager who brought awareness of the issue. “Only 20 minutes down the road from our Thrivent office is an elementary school of 730 kids whose families are at or below the poverty line. To give these students a new coat is much more than giving a new clothing item, it’s giving hope, compassion and love.”

With Adrienne leading the charge, the board approved the goal and the partnership with Operation Warm was forged. Beatty knew that the Thrivent Greater Charlotte community wouldn’t let the kids down. Through the Wrapped in Love program, Brand-new US-made warm winter coats would soon be on their way.

The core mission of Thrivent Financial is to help their members be wise with money and live generously. Their members and supporters do not disappoint, when it comes to these goals.

In fact, the support from Thrivent Choice® members and Foundry Commercial donors was overwhelming. The Wrapped in Love program raised more than $20,000 in only six weeks. Operation Warm set up a customized fundraising page and helped spread awareness of the cause.

Love is Contagious

The community board organized nearly 150 volunteers to help personally give the warm coats. “As each classroom was announced into the Gymnasium, volunteers erupted in cheers and applause,” says Brandon Smith, Operation Warm’s development manager.

Principal Brittany Slagle says, “I heard one girl scream, ‘This is the best day of my life!’ Another said she probably wouldn’t get one because her mommy couldn’t have ordered this for her. These kids are so blessed – I am so blessed – by this program.”

“Operation Warm is not only changing the lives of children throughout the country, but also changing the lives of those organizing the projects,” Beatty says. “They were with us every step of the way.”

To learn more about Thrivent Financial, visit their website.

wrapped in love

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