Our Ongoing Projects
Holiday Toy Drive
Each year, GCF hosts a toy drive to support hospitals, schools and nonprofits that provide critical services to children in the community. We partner with local businesses to collect thousands of new games, books and toys for children, ages infant to young adult. The gifts are shared, not only over the holidays, but throughout the entire year, to brighten the spirits of kids and their families. With the help of Santa Claus and the Oriole Bird, we coordinate special holiday parties to distribute the gifts.
Our toy drive dates back to the holiday season of 1939 when the Harriet Lane Home for Invalid Children, now Johns Hopkins Children’s Center, approached our group to help provide for families in their care over the holidays. Over the years, as the generosity of our community continues to expand, so too has the number of organizations that we are able to support through the holiday toy drive.
GCF hosts various drives to collect items of need for the community. We have collected and donated professional clothing, children’s books and stuffed animals, hygiene kits, and school supplies.
GCF has an on-going relationship with Johns Hopkins Children’s Center, Mt. Washington Pediatric Hospital, Herman & Walter Samuelson Children’s Hospital at Sinai, University of Maryland Medical Center, Ascension Saint Agnes Healthcare, and GBMC.
We support each of these hospitals through the annual toy drive and arrange for special visits from Santa Clause and the Oriole Bird to help brighten the spirits of the children and their families.
Schools, Nonprofits and Community Associations
GCF supports a number of schools, nonprofits and community associations through volunteer outings, financial contributions, and our annual holiday toy drive. We have long-standing relationships with Sharp Leadenhall Elementary School, CoolKids Campaign, the Franciscan Center, and Ronald McDonald House Charities Maryland. We continue to develop new relationships every year and enjoy supporting the community in various capacities.
Our Current Projects
2023: Children’s Projects
Art with a Heart
Art with a Heart enhances the lives of people in need through visual art. What started as a simple idea (brining art classes into communities devoid of the arts) has grown into a multifaceted and unique mode which unites Baltimore’s citizens and provides the tools to address the city’s most pressing challenges: lack of educational equity and opportunity, social/emotional competencies, underemployment, homelessness, racial divisiveness, and trauma.
Baltimore Hunger Project
Baltimore Hunger Project is dedicated to eliminating the growing problem of weekend childhood hunger by feeding bodies and minds. We are bridging the gap between Friday and Monday by consistently providing weekend food packages to children identified as food insecure, in a compassionate and dignified manner. We raise awareness about the effects of hunger by establishing partnerships with community members, other organizations, and decision makers.
Horizon Day Camp
Horizon Day Camp brings the simple pleasures of childhood back to children struggling with cancer, changing months of loneliness and isolation into summers filled with sunshine, laughter and happiness. And because Horizon is a day camp, it does all this while allowing the children to continue their medical treatment and enjoy the comfort and safety of their own homes at night.
Respite Retreats provides retreats of respite to cancer patients, their caregivers, and families in an effort to encourage healthy living for all. Respite Retreats creates an environment focused on fun, relaxation, and self-care, supporting the healing of the body, mind, and spirit.
2020: COVID Relief
Meals for Healthcare Workers
During the pandemic, while most of us are doing our part by staying home and practicing social distancing, our nation’s healthcare workers continue to go to work every day to keep the rest of us healthy and safe. We are proud to partner with Kooper’s Tavern to donate meals to local healthcare workers.
Voices of Vets
The mission of Voices of Vets is to honor veterans through live performances showcasing tunes from the 40’s, 50’s, 60’s, 70’s, and patriotic songs. Our goal is to visit every veteran home in the United States to show our appreciation for the great sacrifices they made for our country. We want the veterans to know that they are not forgotten.
Maryland Food Bank
The mission of the Maryland Food Bank is feeding people, strengthening communities, and ending hunger for more Marylanders.
First Fruits Farms
First Fruits Farm is a Christian ministry dedicated to providing fresh, nutritious produce to those experiencing hunger in the Mid-Atlantic region. Since 2004, thousands of area volunteers have helped harvest over 16.5 million pounds of fruits and vegetables to share with local food banks, homeless shelters, soup kitchens and other food providers.
Community Assistance Network
Community Assistance Network’s mission is to work in partnership with the community to develop, operate and support programs that reduce the vulnerability and promote the personal growth, stability and self-sufficiency of low-income residents in Baltimore County. Our vision is that every resident of Baltimore County will have a clear, barrier-free and easily accessable pathway out of poverty.
Student Support Network
The Student Support Network improves the lives of Baltimore County students in poverty by providing food, other necessities, and advocacy support.
Our Past Projects
2019: Children’s Services
Araminta Freedom Initiative
The Araminta Freedom Initiative is committed to a world where every child is free from the threat of human trafficking. The organization works to awaken, equip and mobilize the Church and community in Maryland to end human trafficking through education, prevention strategies and restorative survivor services.
Center for Adoption Support and Education
CASE is a national leader in mental health services for the foster care and adoption community. CASE nurtures children, teens, adults and their families by providing adoption-competent counseling services.
2018: Health & Wellness
Saint Agnes Foundation
Saint Agnes’ Food Rx program addresses food insecurities by providing access to healthy and affordable food through a pop-up market and in-home food delivery programs to medically fragile patients in Southwest Baltimore.
The Maryland Center for Veterans Education and Training
The Maryland Center for Veterans Education and Training is a nonprofit organization that treats veterans coping with homelessness and substance abuse that is located in Baltimore, Maryland.
2016: Employment Services
Maryland New Directions
The Maryland New Directions’ mission is to train and coach people facing career and life transitions to overcome barriers, restore self-belief, and acquire the skills and tools needed to secure employment. The Maryland New Directions’ vision is the elimination of long-term unemployment in our community.
2015: Community Development
The Franciscan Center
The mission of the Franciscan Center is to provide emergency assistance and supportive outreach to economically disadvantaged men, women and children in an effort to assist them in realizing their self-worth and dignity as people of God.
The mission of Banner Neighborhoods is to promote resident-based leadership, neighborhood pride and stability, and provide direct services that contribute to the overall viability of parts of East and Southeast communities in Baltimore City.
2014: Educational Development, Veterans, Children’s Health & Wellness
Catch a Lift Foundation
Catch a Lift was started as a memorial to Cpl. Chris Coffland. The Mission is to help wounded post-9/11 service members start and maintain their healing process, both mentally and physically, through physical fitness by providing them with gifted gym memberships anywhere in the United States.
Cool Kids Campaign
Cool Kids Campaign is dedicated to improving the quality of life for pediatric oncology patients and their families while they are going through the trauma of a cancer diagnosis and its treatments.