February 20, 2020


Dear Friends,     

We're two months into 2020, and we have already seen that it's going to be a big year for MVLF. God continues to show us His heart to meet the deep needs of our communities with the even deeper resources of His wisdom, love, and care. Here are a few reasons why. 
"If you want to go fast, go alone. If you want to go far, go together." So says the African proverb. And such is the heart of the Miami Valley Leadership Foundation: we're here for the long-haul to see our communities transform from battlegrounds to playgrounds. And there's only one way we know how to do that: together

Hope4Communities (H4C) is MVLF's strategy to meet the diverse, nuanced needs the Miami Valley's communities face each day. MVLF recognizes that every community has its own story, its own challenges, its own constraints, and its own possibilities for a flourishing future. And the people who know those needs and opportunities best are the neighbors and leaders of those communities. So, to harness the renewable resource of unity on mission, MVLF connects community churches and leaders from various sectors around a shared vision of collective impact to address their community’s most pressing needs.

We currently have thriving Hope4Communities in Riverside and Miamisburg and, as of this year, in North Dayton. 

We invite you to pray for our current and emerging H4Cs and their leaders to continue to pursue humility, shared vision, common mission, and focused action. Visit our website to learn more.
Whether or not you celebrate Valentine's Day, we can all agree that receiving reminders that we're seen, known, and loved are invaluable. And it doesn't matter how young or old you may be: receiving the gift of candy will make anyone smile. 

So, to use the holiday as an opportunity to share with others, two MVLF mentees from Brantwood Elementary in Mad River made valentines for their classmates with their mentors. "She loves making valentines for her friends," said Christine, an MVLF mentor, about her mentee, Destiny. 

Markers, stickers, lollipops, construction paper, and glue sticks made way to carefully crafted colorful creations of love and affection. One might look at the simplicity of the materials used and think it was a pleasant, simple gesture of kindness. But look closer and you'll see that the coloring and gluing and sticking are doing more than creating beautiful valentines; they're creating deeper relationships. 

Vickie, an MVLF mentor, shared a special moment with her mentee, Adelina: "My mentee and I are making Valentines for her classmates. During our visit, she told me that I am now her very best friend!" 
This is the power of mentoring. 
In late January, Shannon Tood, MVLF's Mentoring Program Director, attended the National Mentoring Summit. This annual summit is the premier equipping event for anyone involved in mentoring. More than 1500 attendees gathered from more than 40 states and 10 countries to share, listen, and learn from the researchers, practioners, and innovators in the world of mentoring. While she was there, Shannon spent time with numerous Leadership Foundations team members from different parts of the U.S. Shannon returned with numerous tools and insights to help MVLF go deeper in serving the Miami Valley's communities. Way to go, Shannon!
Since the 2019-2020 school year began, MVLF made an impact on more than 270 lives throughout the Miami Valley. And we're just getting started. Help us reach our goal of matching 300 mentor-mentee relationships. We invite you to send this action card to anyone you feel may be willing to give to the mission of MLVF. 
The MVLF Team