Read first hand about the power of this ministry from Ryan Plemmons. Ryan is interning with us this summer:
Kids Hope USA Anniversary
On Tuesday, May 24, 2011, ministers and volunteers gathered at South Knoxville Elementary to celebrate yet another anniversary of the Kids Hope USA program. The program, which began at First Baptist Church five years ago, involves tutors from FBC working with students who have poor marks in reading. While there, tutors often form incredible bonds with their student that transcends the reading material. Kids and tutors often do out-of-class activities and have fun outside the classroom, allowing tutors to show the kids the love and compassion of their Lord. As the school year came to a close, kids and their parents were treated to hot dogs, chips and cookies. Kids could lso be seen playing on inflatable toys and generally enjoying the end of a hard year of school.
While not a tutor, I was fortunate enough to meet and chat with Trevor, a fourth grader at the school. He was extremely talkative and funny, and his favorite hobbies involve reading joke books and lifting weights. While he seems to enjoy school, there is plenty of hardship in this home. His mother is unemployed, and he as been forced to mow lawns in order to make ends meet for his mother and sisters. Having met him, I realized that all of the blessings that have populated my life and the lives of many inside the Church are not available to all. Poverty can at times seem so distant and removed from our lives, but Trevor lives only minutes away from our church and from our comfortable lifestyles. This is a challenging reality to deal with. Thankfully, programs like Kids Hope keep children like Trevor interested and engaged in school, and provide them with an opportunity to escape their tough situation through education. Programs like these are vital to improving our community, and I would like to take this opportunity to commend all the people who tutor or volunteer with the young ones at South Knoxville Elementary. Your work is certainly not easy, but the difference you make in the lives of these children is both tangible and eternal. The love of Christ you exhibit to these kids is incredible, and the impact you are making in the school is amazing. Keep up the good work!