More than any recent new year, this one arrived with more new normals to adjust to. And we all have grown accustomed to the ever-shifting status quos and differing definitions of "normalcy" in our communities, schools, offices, and homes. At MVLF, we continue to strive to stay ahead of the changes we see coming to ensure we don't lose the momentum of transformation in our communities.
How do we remain consistent to our mission despite the ebb and flow of life? Answer: We stay committed to our most important normal in the midst of a world of new normals. Hope.
Pursuing hope—together—is and will always be our normal. Why? Because hope is steadfast, and hope leads to transformation.
Every young person—from a first-grade student to a graduating high-school senior—wants to know they’re seen and known. And the power of a caring adult’s investment can do just that: remind them they’re important.
But one in three young people grow up without a mentor. One in three young people navigate the rigors of school, friend groups, social pressures, and life’s anxieties struggling to know whether they’re important or valued.
And they are valued. Each of them.
One caring mentor can change everything in a young person’s life. And you can, too! This national mentoring month, we invite you to bring hope to a young person’s life by becoming a mentor with MVLF. We have in-person and online mentoring opportunities you can participate in.
|Book pages flipping, fingers typing, pencils scribbling, minds working: the sounds of learning fill the room. Before the difficulties related to COVID-19, these sounds were commonplace. On this day in December 2020, though, they’re the welcomed sounds of normalcy, of students learning together.|
But as students work on math homework and submit assignments, they're not in a typical classroom.
They’re in Hope4Miamisburg’s (H4M) Safe Centers—pop-up classrooms throughout Miamisburg churches. These Safe Centers helped meet the needs of Miamisburg students after the schools shifted to fully online learning before holiday break to protect the health of its teachers, families, and students.
When the schools decided to shift to online learning, many families who juggled at-home learning life earlier in 2020 had to do so again—orchestrating at-home care, adjusting grocery budgets, etc. As schools and families faced these difficulties, H4M and its partners raced to meet the need.
Four area churches transformed their lobbies, recreational areas, and coffee-shop spaces into socially distanced areas for students to learn safely. Working with the schools to provide students with meals, transportation to the Safe Centers, and Wi-Fi hotspots, H4M sought to ensure this switch to online learning wouldn’t disrupt students’ learning nor their safety and health.
By holiday break, H4M’s Safe Centers had helped almost 100 elementary school students—and the countless families they represent—meet an immediate need. And it was possible through the collaboration, unity, and togetherness of Hope4Miamisburg and its partnerships. Without the Safe Centers, most of these students would have wrestled not to fall behind before break began.
“This was a true collaborative effort to meet a need in our community,” says Sarah Pelphrey, MVLF’s H4M director.
Today, Miamisburg students have returned to in-person learning, but should the schools close again, H4M stands ready to meet their needs. Meanwhile, H4M is working with other Hope4Communities and their schools to offer the same Safe-Center care.
|When you give to MVLF, you enable change like this as we mobilize area churches and partners to care for their communities. Your financial support makes all the difference as we engage with communities to help them transform themselves through collaboration, unity, and hope.|
|On December 27, 2020, one-hundred-fifty family-packed cars (about 500 people!) joined MVLF at the Dixie-Twin Drive-In to celebrate the hope of Christmas.|
MVLF and Declare Dayton partnered with twenty churches and organizations to host a drive-in Christmas service for area families to enjoy. MVLF and Declare wanted to ensure families could enjoy community and celebrate hope despite the difficulties of social distancing.
Read WHIO’s coverage of the event here.