Daily Point of Light # 3128 Jan 31, 2006

The Painter Family of Yucaipa, California is a team in more ways than one. During the past eighteen years, they have been especially involved in making their community a better place. They believe everyone should give back to make the place they live better day-by-day, and they serve because of that, not for recognition.

The family is innovative and self-directed. Mrs. Painter started “Food For Love” eighteen years ago when they found themselves in need. Mrs. Painter did not have an income and was raising two babies. She struggled to get by and discovered coupons as a way of life. They know how it feels to need some help and Food For Love provides that for those who find themselves in need.

No matter what the circumstances were, the Painters taught their children to volunteer. Their three children grew up following their parents’ example of serving. As a family they go on short term missionary trips to Mexico to build shelter for needy families. The Painters do not just give of their time either. Jessica, who is 18 years old, gave her entire savings to build a loft house for a needy family just last summer. Ali and Elizabeth have been selling candy bars for six months and almost have enough for a loft house, too. The Painter Family’s efforts have inspired several families to donate houses in Mexico. So more people are committing themselves to helping the underserved there.

In addition, the Painter Family has organized community food drives and work closely with the Volunteers In Action on funding projects and other volunteering activities. The members are well known and Jessica has received several community service awards. During one particular year, the Painter Family has donated an excess of $20,000 worth of groceries to various organizations. This is a great feat as Food For Love donates about $10,000 worth of groceries on an average per year. It was made possible because Jessica was given $500.00 as a community service award, and she challenged herself to stretch it to $10,000. She did just that within five months of very hard work.