In 2013 I had the privilege of coming on as an administrative assistant for several ministries here at Austin Oaks Church. I was told that I was going to help plan a Pumpkin Patch. I had ideas, fears, and downright excitement running through me the whole time. I had no idea what I was in for. Then I get the packet from my boss, and realized this was bigger than I thought. I finally asked what are the proceeds going to? He said, Redeemed Ministries, which is a Christian non-profit organization that helps stop human trafficking in the city of Austin. This gave me a bigger drive to get these pumpkins here and sold. I started getting posters made, flyers to hand out, and made announcements. We had many people come take pictures, buy pumpkins, and ask questions about Redeemed Ministries. We had the unfortunate ability to say human trafficking does happen in our city.

In 2014, we got the word out sooner, and were able to be more social media aware. We had return customers and new customers, and they were coming just because we were giving the proceeds to Redeemed Ministries once again. One Sunday a new member of our church came up to me and asked, "Why are we selling pumpkins?" His kids were begging for a pumpkin, and he didn't want to pay our prices. I told him about Redeemed Ministries and what they do, and then I told him how the Pumpkin Patch works. I said anything over the price of your pumpkins would be a donation to the Organization and 100% would go to them. He looked at me, nodded, and said, "Thank you for your help." I thought he was going to walk away. Instead he turns to his wife and kids, and asks them to go get a big pumpkin each and one small pumpkin each. I was floored when I priced all the pumpkins for him I told him it would be $250. He turned to his wife and said, "Make the check out for $2,000." I felt like a kid on Christmas. I didn't know what to do. I just hugged him with tears in my eyes and said, "THANK YOU!!" With donations and pumpkins sales this year we were able to give, $5,265.77. This year our goal is to give Redeemed Ministries over $7,000."

 

36025 Leah ThompsonLeah Thompson
Austin Oaks Church (Austin, TX)

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Pumpkin Patch Fundraisers
425 Highway 150 West
Greensboro, NC 27455

 

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