May 9, 2022
Empty Bowls season is always exciting. Much like flowers in Spring, people bloom with excitement for the event in a season framed with paint parties. Barnabas is so fortunate to partner with businesses in our community that jump at the opportunity to sponsor Empty Bowls. WestRock, upon the announcement of this year’s event, secured their spot as a sponsor with a generous donation of $5,000. After learning of the increased need for food for Barnabas clients WestRock donated an additional $3,000 to help meet the needs of the Nutrition Services Program. Their donation will assist in providing food insecure families with healthy, low sodium, and low sugar food options. The funds will also support the Barnabas Meal Pack Program, which provides healthy meals each weekend for children experiencing homelessness.
In a time where low-income families are struggling to recover from the financial impact of a pandemic, an unpredictable and competitive economy has further stretched already thin budgets. Barnabas is grateful for support from companies like WestRock whose Empty Bowls sponsorship will help us improve the lives of those we serve.
Contact Tania Yount to become an Empty Bowls sponsor and learn how you can help your community, firstname.lastname@example.org.
Habitat for Humanity
Submitted by: Cindy Jacoby
May 8, 2022
Recently, First Love Brewing held a Friend’s themed trivia night hosted by the guys at Trivia30. With proceeds going to Nassau Habitat for Humanity, board member Stacy Horst gladly accepted the surprise check and stated, “This will go a long way to help us reach our new goal of building six houses per year for our neighbors in need.”
Nassau Habitat and its network of volunteers build affordable homes with a mission to build family strength, stability, and self-reliance through homeownership.
To volunteer: www.nassauhabitatforhumanity.org.
4/21/22 @ 2:15 p.m. - On Saturday, April 16, 2022, the County hosted the Household Hazardous Waste Recycling Event. We are pleased to report that during the 4 hour event, a total of 348 vehicles came through. The event also included a food drive for Barnabas' food pantry. It has been reported that a total of 587 pounds was collected! This will have a positive impact on individuals in need right here in our community and we are grateful to everyone who made a donation.
Thank you as well to each and every resident that attended the event and did their part to ensure that harmful items are kept out of the landfill. And a big thank you to the employees at Nassau County Solid Waste and Keep Nassau Beautiful for coordinating the event, and to the public works employees who spent their morning with us clearing out vehicles for the residents, sorting materials, and placing them in the proper truck for disposal.
Below are some photos from the event. It will still be several weeks until we know the exact weight/tonnage of hazardous materials collected, but we will share that information as soon as it's available.
Public Information Officer
April 19, 2022
Jacksonville, Fla., April 19, 2022 – North Florida Land Trust and volunteers from several community organizations recently participated in a restoration project at Little NaNa Dune in historic American Beach. The group planted a variety of plants on the dune which was acquired for conservation by NFLT last year. The project was driven by NFLT Board Member Pastor Carlton Jones and William Price who were joined by the NFLT team and volunteers from the Fernandina Beach Sea Oat Lovers, Amelia Island Comp Plan/LDC Working Group, and the Nassau County Extension Service along with other community members.
Frank Hopf from the Dune Science Group provided expertise and guided the team of volunteers who planted many different plant species including sea oats, beach dune sunflowers, blanket flowers, seashore dropseed, sea oxeye daisies and bee balm. The plants chosen for the restoration project were picked to help restore the dunes which are a habitat for wildlife including gopher tortoises and migrating birds. The plants will help renourish the natural space and provide a diet for the wildlife.
Cynthia Jones Jackson and her family purchased the plants for the project. They also provided work gloves, adjustable height shovels, suntan lotion and refreshments. Mike Anderson of Lawn and Order Lawn Service LLC volunteered his time and gas to pick up and deliver the plants from Green Seasons nursery just south of Tampa.
Little NaNa Dune is 1.55 acres adjacent to the larger 8.5-acre NaNa Dune, the tallest dune in Florida. NaNa Dune is part of the National Park Service’s Timucuan Ecological and Historic Preserve. Both dune systems are an important part of historic American Beach which was founded in 1935 to give African Americans access to a beach during the days of segregation. In 2002, the original beach property was added to the U.S. National Register of Historic Places and the American Beach Museum opened in 2014.
In 2021, NFLT purchased three parcels of Little Nana Dune that were in danger of development. Donations to the Amelia Forever Campaign along with $500,000 from an anonymous donor and a challenge grant from the Delores Barr Weaver helped to raise the more than $1.3 million needed to finance the acquisition.
NFLT established the Amelia Forever Campaign in 2019 to preserve the remaining natural spaces on Amelia Island. To learn more about the campaign and how to help, visit www.nflt.org/ameliaforever or contact NFLT at 904-479-1967 or email@example.com.
About North Florida Land Trust
North Florida Land Trust is a not-for-profit organization dedicated to preserving and enhancing the quality of life by protecting North Florida’s irreplaceable natural environment. Founded in 1999, NFLT has preserved tens of thousands of acres of land through the donation or purchase of land as well as conservation easements. NFLT is funded largely by private and corporate contributions and works closely with willing landowners and public agencies at all levels of government, not-for-profit partners, and foundations. For more information, visit nflt.org.
Join Keep Nassau Beautiful THIS SATURDAY, April 23rd from 9:30 AM to 12:30 PM for the first annual Downtown to Dunes event! In celebration of Earth Day, lend a hand for a litter clean-up from downtown to the dunes of Fernandina Beach, followed by a volunteer appreciation event at Mocama Beer Company immediately after.
Volunteers 21+ will receive a beer token to redeem during the after-the-cleanup volunteer appreciation at Mocama Beer Co. Volunteers under age 21 will receive a free KNB aluminum water bottle. The first 100 pre-registered participants receive a free inaugural event t-shirt!
CLICK HERE to learn more and sign up today!
The ARC Nassau
Submitted by John Scherer
On behalf of ARC Board of Directors
April 7, 2022
April Taylor from Rayonier Advanced Materials Foundation, on behalf of the Foundation President Mr. Jay Posze, and CEO Paul Boynton, presents a donation to Steven Carr, the ARC Nassau Board Director and to Paul Bussell, the Executive Director of the ARC Nassau for their continued support of the ARC Nassau’s long term mission to provide continuing services for our areas adults with intellectual and developmental disabilities.
The ARC Nassau is headed towards completion of ‘Phase One’ of several phases, of its newest addition for expansion to the existing facility, with the “Outdoor Experience Center” expansion project. The long awaited project, which includes a ¼ mile walkway paved path, a basketball half court, an event pavilion, and much more will be developed in on-going phases to completion in the very near future. The “OEC” will provide and promote an area of support for the scores of clients of the ARC Nassau with a safe area and a positive environment for not only exercise but a positive environment for social engagement and advancement of developmental skills.
The ARC Nassau is a non-profit Florida and Federally recognized organization, that has been serving the needs of hundreds of individuals for the past 45 years in Nassau County and surrounding areas providing charitable learning programs, job skills development and employment opportunities, and daily transportation for our adults with many developmental disabilities to maximize their independence at home and in our communities.
To learn more about how ‘you and your organization can be a part of the ARC Nassau and this project for “Advocacy, Donation and Volunteerism “ to this outstanding, long established facility, please call Paul Bussell, the Executive Director or Patty Lannon White at 904-225-9355
Habitat for Humanity
Submitted by: Cindy Jacoby
April 4, 2022
Nassau Habitat for Humanity is excited and grateful to announce that our inaugural Tees Fore Keys Golf outing exceeded our expectations and brought us one giant step closer to our goal of building six houses annually by 2026. “We want to thank all our participants, sponsors, volunteers, and Amelia River Golf Club staff for making our inaugural golf outing an enormous success. Through the efforts and generosity of everyone involved we were able to raise over $24,000 that we will use towards our mission of helping build family strength, stability and self-reliance through homeownership” said Barnes Moore, Nassau Habitat board chair.
Golf committee chair and board member Gary Whitmore added “since this was our first ever golf tournament, we weren’t sure what to expect. We were pleasantly surprised to have a full field of over 100 golfers signed up two weeks before tournament day.”
The event culminated in a silent, online auction that saw bidders from many parts of the country. “Our silent auction was such a success due to the generosity of our local business owners and supporter. This event puts us closer to our goal of building six homes per year in Nassau County by 2026. We live in a magical place,” said Stacy Horst, auction chair.
A special thank you goes to our top sponsors Prime South Bank and First Federal Bank. Your gifts provided the foundation for operating this sold our successful event. We are inspired by the community’s response to our inaugural fundraising event. Watch for information on our fall event She Nailed It! – an all-women hammering team relay race- Ladies, start forming your foursomes.
Please visit our website www.nassauhabitatforhumanity.org to see event pictures and the full list of sponsors who greeted the 108 players on March 25, 2022.
Yulee, Fla: Starting Point Behavioral Healthcare today announced that Saturday, April 2nd, 2022, is the organization’s thirty-year anniversary of service in Nassau County, Florida. The nonprofit behavioral healthcare organization originally opened under the name Nassau County Mental Health and Alcoholism and Drug Abuse Council, Inc. in 1992. After undergoing a name change in 2001, the organization rebranded to Starting Point Behavioral Healthcare in 2012 to better reflect the idea that healing begins or ‘starts’ in Nassau County. Starting Point’s motto is ‘Healing Begins Here.’
“We could not be happier to celebrate thirty years of service in Nassau County,” says Laureen Pagel, CEO at Starting Point Behavioral Healthcare. “The work we do isn’t always easy, but it’s important and necessary. The reality is that our family members, community members and neighbors struggle with mental health and substance use disorders. I am honored to continue to serve our community, to have a hand in making Nassau County a happier and healthier place to live, and to provide a safety net for our neighbors that need a safe place to shore their troubles. I look forward to thirty more years of service and thank Nassau County and all our partnering organizations for their continued support in this pursuit.”
Dr. Pagel has been with Starting Point Behavioral Healthcare since 1997 and served as the Chief Executive Officer since 2008. Under her 25 years of leadership, the organization has doubled in size and budget with plans to offer a mobile unit and open two new locations in Fernandina Beach and Callahan later this year.
The organization continues to offer mental health and substance use treatment to residents of Nassau County, Northeast Florida, and Southeast Georgia. Some of their primary service offerings include individual, group, and family therapy, comprehensive assessments, medication management, and psychiatric evaluations. In addition to the clinical services they offer to adults and children, Starting Point provides 24/7 emergency assistance and free community outreach activities to spread the message of attainable mental well-being for everyone.
To learn more about the services at Starting Point Behavioral Healthcare, please visit www.spbh.org.
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