2020 Rise Up Newsletter
Hello Friends of Rise Up! Exciting things have been happening at Rise Up! Recently, we celebrated our mentors and volunteers at our annual Rise Up Appreciation Dinner. This event is an opportunity for fellowship, for the sharing of a meal, and for connecting and interacting with the Rise Up youth whom mentors and volunteers have been serving. The theme for the dinner was “Rise Up’s Got Talent” which highlighted the gifts and talents of several Rise Up youth. It was a joy to watch our youth share their passions with their friends and family.
The Rise Up Appreciation Dinner also recognizes our community volunteers and partners. The Rise Up Community Partner of the Year was Grace Meadows Church. Members of Grace Meadows Church helped rebuild a walkway on our campus, The Refuge. They also served at family and student events at The Refuge. Grace Fellowship Church received our Matthew 10:42 Volunteer Award for faithfully providing birthday cakes for the children who attend our afterschool program.
Mentor Hall of Fame awards were presented at the Rise Up Appreciation Dinner. Kristy Beidleman and Kari Tuthill were inducted into the Mentor Hall of Fame for 5 and 10 years, respectively, of faithful mentoring. Their commitment as mentors is a wonderful blessing and a huge success for these women and their mentees. Each of our mentors, volunteers, and community partners have played a vital role in fulfilling Rise Up’s mission to help kids be relationally successful and prepared for the future. We appreciate all of the time and the efforts of each person who has partnered with us in this ministry. We pray for many more to join us so that you may not only be a blessing to others, but also to be truly blessed in return.
In January, we had the amazing opportunity to take 30 middle and highs school students to Atlanta to tour the MLK Museum and to experience the HBCU (Historically Black Colleges and Universities) College Fair and Battle of the Bands. These students were challenged to improve their grades and/or achieve honor roll in order to be eligible for this educational and cultural enrichment trip. We are so proud of their diligence and hard work which resulted in this well-deserved trip of a lifetime that included staying in Hotel Indigo in downtown Atlanta!
Rise Up youth interacted with several college recruiters at the HBCU College Fair. This opened their eyes to available opportunities, and they returned home with a plethora of information. The Battle of the Bands was created to celebrate, support, and recognize the excellence of black college marching bands and the unique academic experience offered by the HBCU. The Battle of the Bands showcase featured musical performances from the top eight HBCU marching bands. Rise Up youth loved this event, and they all raved about the performances.
While in Atlanta, Rise Up youth experienced God’s provision in an amazing way! While the Rise Up group was checking into their hotel, Damon Johnson, Rise Up Next Level Director and a trip chaperone, met a gentleman who inquired about this large group of teens and their purpose in visiting Atlanta. Damon shared about Rise Up, about how the kids had earned the trip, and about their itinerary. The next evening, after a very long and busy day, Rise Up youth were having dinner at a pizza restaurant beside the hotel. When the check was presented to Damon, the credit card was declined because the card was being used outside its typical geographic boundaries. Damon returned to the hotel to find a solution, and, while entering the elevator, he once again crossed paths with the gentleman he had met at check in. This new friend of Rise Up immediately wanted to know about the Rise Up kids’ day in Atlanta. As Damon shared about all they had done, the man reached for his wallet and handed Damon $120 to be used on behalf of Rise Up youth. He then asked to meet with and speak to the kids. Damon and he returned to the pizza restaurant where this generous and godly man encouraged Rise Up youth with words about life, grades, and choices. He concluded by giving Damon another $50. That $170 more than covered the cost of dinner!
God is so good, and we are so grateful for every small and grand detail of how He is moving at Rise Up! Thank you for your prayers, support, and encouragement. We could not do all we do without you!
NEED: Volunteers to assist middle and high school students with homework
Contact: Madison at 610-1242 or firstname.lastname@example.org