July 28, 2020
Dear Friend,
As summer begins to transition to back-to-school sales, we've seen MVLF mentoring momentum continue and community engagement deepen. We'd love to share a little of that with you below!

Throughout the school year, Charlene, an MVLF mentor, had heard all about Isaiah’s plastic-brick creations. But it wasn’t until this summer that he finally got to show her some of his famous LEGO masterpieces on a Zoom call during an E-mentoring meeting. 

MVLF developed E-mentoring to help mentor-mentee matches stay connected in light of social-distancing requirements. Because of E-mentoring, Charlene and Isaiah have continued to meet together this summer. Charlene has stayed in touch with Isaiah and built on what she has learned the past year and a half as his mentor—including hearing more about his LEGO creations.

Mentoring with MVLF has given Charlene the confidence that simply by showing up and being herself, she is capable of investing in the next generation.

“I don't have to be something I am not,” she says. “The most important thing is to be consistent. I don't do cartwheels or juggle, but I am 100% present for one hour a week. I listen. I am interested when he shows me something he made or something he is excited about.”

We’re thankful for Charlene and all the other mentors participating in E-mentoring.

When you financially partner with MVLF, you partner with the everyday moments that change students' stories. And you partner with a movement of transformation in the city of Dayton.

We invite you to partner with us or to invite someone who may be interested.

Give to MVLF

Boxes sit stacked along a wall in a Mad River Local School hallway. Inside, donated backpacks sit waiting to become students' first day-of-school backpacks. And as Shannon Todd, MVLF's Mentoring Program Director; Pastor Dan Powell, the Hope4Riverside (H4R) director; and Chad Wyen, Mad River Local School superintendent, open a box, they find more than they expected. 


For three years, H4R has partnered with Mad River Local Schools to host the "Day of Giving Back" event in Riverside. On their first day back to school, teachers gather with H4R pastors and area volunteers to distribute back-to-school supplies to Riverside students at five distribution locations, where "Day of Giving Back" events offer cookouts, face painting, games, and more. The "Day of Giving Back" has become a seminal event in Riverside.

Then, in March, COVID-19 arrived. Its restrictions made it difficult for H4R and Mad River Local Schools to coordinate any planning for 2020's "Day of Giving Back," including plans for donation collection, the crux of the event. But God made it clear He wants another "Day of Giving Back" to happen in Riverside.

Crayons to Classrooms, an area nonprofit, reached out to Mad River Local Schools and donated 1,000 backpacks. Some of the backpacks, it was communicated, already held school supplies. It seemed the "Day of Giving Back" was back. All that was needed was a little bit of planning and donations to fill the majority of backpacks. And then again, God showed up. 

When the backpack boxes were opened, ALL the backpacks—not some of them—were found to have supplies in them. A few packets of pencils and some markers were all that were needed still. And Riverside churches have already begun to collect those items. 

This year's "Day of Giving" will take place on August 25 at two drive-up locations for families.


Meet Shannon Todd, MVLF’s Mentoring Program Director. She coordinates, equips, and encourages MVLF mentors and volunteers, helping them confidently and carefully use their stories to enrich the lives of students—and prepares them to be enriched by students’ stories as well. 

Serving with MVLF since 2017, Shannon offers a life-long pursuit of empowering others. “I have been passionate about investing in the lives of young people for as long as I can remember,” shares Shannon. “My position at MVLF is a beautiful combination of my passion for youth and schools with ministry and spreading the love of Christ.”

We’re thankful for the work Shannon does to make a flourishing future for Miami Valley's students, families, and communities a reality.

The MVLF Team