North Main Street Business District: Business Profile
N. Main Street Business District Business Profile! Changing Lives Outreach Center CDC is run by Ms. Cynthia Terry who has always been passionate about community. The organization got its start 27 years ago, when Ms. Cynthia saw a need in her community. Her church sponsored her and she went to what is now Camilla Williams park with sandwiches, clothing, school supplies and book bags. She had over 200 people come, and began holding the event every year. Later, she ran a food bank through her church for 12 years.
In 2017 Ms. Cynthia took steps to start Changing Lives Community Outreach CDC, which became a 501 c 3 nonprofit organization in 2018. In 2019 Changing Lives Outreach Center opened its doors on N. Union Street, providing a safe place for youth to come get help with school work and learn coping strategies for strong emotions. Programs offered included afterschool support, cooking classes and more. The organization also provided food to families in need through its mobile food bank.
“Our mission is to decrease food insecurities by breaking the cycle of poverty and providing services to children and adults that will reduce barriers that hinder self-sufficiency and growth. Our vision is to be a catalyst in offering services that our community needs to promote sustainability so families can traverse through life above their current circumstances.”
During the global pandemic, the foodbank was even more in demand as families looked for sources of groceries and other essentials. The Changing Lives Outreach Center began to set up the food bank weekly on tables on the sidewalk. Later, to meet the needs of those with food insecurity, the foodbank turned into a mobile food bank and has continued that way until the present. There is also a monthly food pantry on the 4th Friday of each month, as well as a grab and go lunch program for children in the summer. Changing Lives Outreach Center runs the only year round mobile food bank in Danville.
In 2019, the building on N. Union Street was sold, and the Changing Lives Outreach Center CDC moved to its current location at 609 Keen Street in the North Main Business District. The organization continues its amazing work for youth through its 20 student after school program where 20 participants moved onto the next grade, 6 made the honor roll, and 10 earned at least A’s and B’s in math and reading.
Student Success Story: “One young woman came to the program with very low self esteem. She didn’t look up much, was shy, and was not doing well in school. After participating in the Changing Lives Outreach Center after school program, where she worked on self esteem and had the support and encouragement she needed, she is now just one letter grade from being on the Honor Roll, and doesn’t stop talking!”
The Changing Lives Outreach Center CDC is currently looking for new board members who have a heart for community work, and want to make a difference and create a community where neighbors help neighbors. If you are interested in this work, visit http://changinglivescdc.org/ for more information.
Also, come out and celebrate the community! Changing Lives Outreach Center CDC turns 5 this year! The CELEBRATION will take place on August 26th from 11-2 in the N. Main Business District. It is a free community event with free hot dogs, groceries for the first 100 families, information tables from the Health Department and PATHS. Kitty’s Closet will be there with clothes and students will be able to pick up school supplies. And last but not least, there will be a bouncy house for the kids! If you would like to volunteer at the event, have a vendor table, or donate food, water or your musical talents to the celebration visit http://changinglivescdc.org/ for more information.