About ​The Empowerment Center

The Empowerment Center is the social service outreach arm of El Shaddai Christian Ministries, a tax-deductible nonprofit. We diverts tons of food each year from the sanitary landfill to thousands of families and homeless who would otherwise go hungry.

Over the last two decades, we’ve also been instrumental in putting people to work, diverting them from homelessness, and restoring individuals to self-sufficiency.

In 2023, here is how we served:

Total families served

Total Volunteer Hours

Pounds of Food Shipped

Volunteers load food into a truck for low income families

We’re 100% volunteer run

Our volunteers work tirelessly to sort produce and food and create boxes for our drive-through food bank. We also supply several ministries with food to distribute to the homeless and needy.

During the holiday season, we serve the neediest families with overflowing holiday meal boxes so that they can make delicious holiday dinners.

Those receiving groceries also benefit from giving back. Many volunteers who serve their fellow community members came because they needed food and made the decision to help serve others. Individuals who donate time and labor to the food distribution program take home free groceries, and often get some special treats.

Food bank volunteer creating boxes for people
Volunteer directs food bank traffic

Putting people back to work

In addition to food distribution, our employment development component has helped hundreds of people to get back on their feet through:

  • employment training
  • work experience
  • hands-on coaching in work readiness
  • resources and supplies needed to go to work (transportation, clothing, certifications and documentation)
  • assistance in applying, following up and securing employment

Giving is what we do

In 2005, Dr. Jimmie and Pastor Lawanna Lee were called by God to serve their community. Since then, they have vowed to keep their doors open as long as possible. Mr. and Ms. Lee operate the Empowerment Center and El Shaddai Christian Ministries, a small church dedicated to loving, accepting and empowering people. They have touched hundreds of lives over the last two decades and are well-loved in the Tacoma community.

Dr. Jimmie and Lawanna Lee of Tacoma's Empowerment Center