[EDITOR’S NOTE: The following is a Letter to the Editor, submitted by a verified resident. It does not necessarily reflect the opinions of South King Media, nor its staff:]

As President of Transform Burien since its inception, I would like to respond to Charles Schaefer’s Letter to the Editor dated December 28th.

As a board we are deeply appreciative of the many hours Charles Schaefer has volunteered with us. We are so grateful for the hundreds of volunteers who help us each month to love the overlooked in our community and never want to take that for granted. We are an organization that relies on volunteer help and donations. We are made up of people and sometimes when you work with people things get messy. Let me try to clear up some of the mess for you.

Every dime that is given to Transform goes directly to fulfilling its mission in the community. We have one part-time paid staff person, and we hire a janitor a few hours each week. It is one ministry with many parts including: 1) meals offered each week to anyone who comes in our doors, 2) a food bank where folks can walk out with a couple of bags of groceries, 2) a clothing bank that offers a variety of clothing items to all who come in, 3) a laundry program that allows people without a washer and dryer the opportunity to clean their clothes, 4) a free health clinic that opens one Saturday a month for those who cannot afford health care in addition to visits from the King County Medical and Dental vans. All of these programs cost money in addition to our monthly overhead for building and staff costs. We operate on a very strict and tight budget and each department is given money based on our income to operate according to that budget. Like any charitable organization, we reserve the right to direct that money where it is most needed unless we have asked for a special donation for a special project. It has been our policy that we do not take designated monetary gifts and has been our practice to inform donors of that policy. We don’t want to be in a position where one aspect of our ministry gets overfunded while another is left underfunded. All donations go toward the ongoing ministry of Transform. God has faithfully provided for us for many years through thousands of volunteer hours and the generosity of this community.

It is not our policy to discuss publicly our personnel issues. Charles has not served on our board and is not aware of how we handle our staff. We will always do our best to do what is right both by the organization and the individuals who are a part of it.

Transform has served in this community in many ways for over 20 years. It has been our great privilege. There are many worthy charities that you can give to, and we feel honored whenever you choose us over the many other opportunities that you have.

May we all prosper in the New Year so that no charity is forgotten!

Patrick T. Foutz
President, Transform Burien

NOTE: Charles Schaefer is not related to BTB Founder/Publisher/Editor Scott Schaefer.

EDITOR’S NOTE: Do you have something you’d like to share with our highly engaged local Readers? If so, please email your Letter to the Editor to [email protected] and, pending review and verification that you’re a real human being, we may publish it. Letter writers must use their full names and cite sources – as well as provide an address and phone number (NOT for publication but for verification purposes).


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