Did you know there are over 100 unique roles filled by volunteers each month? In this series, Cindy Ziemba will be sharing stories of some of our wide range of volunteers at Ward Church, all serving to lead generations to live and love like Jesus!
They may seem little, but God uses them to do big things. “They” are the annual group of WardKids who take the Next Steps Class taught by Pastor Scott McKee and Justin Tucker, Director of Ward Kids. This year, 23 students with a parent met to learn about what it means to be a Christian, about baptism and communion. They were challenged to use their abilities to bless others. You may have seen them in worship services, taking their Next Steps of faith through baptism, re-affirmation of their baptism, or receiving communion for the first time.
After studying the Parable of the Talents (Matthew 25:14-20), each student was asked to create a project that would identify a specific need of a person or organization. The goal was to use their talents and multiply their money to bless an individual or group in need. An envelope of ‘seed money’ was given to each child – the total given to the class was about $350. The blessings distributed were much greater!
Emma received an envelope with $15.00 inside. Emma chose to make banana bread to sell. Between the profit of her sales and many generous donations of time and talent, she was able to present the Living and Learning Center with a check for $500.00. Living and Learning provides services for teens and young adults who are on the autism spectrum and/or have other related challenges. Emma chose this organization because she goes to school with kids that have some of these same challenges. Emma learned that they have outgrown their current location and are in the process of moving to a larger facility that will better meet their needs. Upon meeting one of the directors and touring the new campus, Emma was excited to see that there would be opportunities to volunteer there in the future.
Andrew made brownies and rice krispies treats, and sold them to raise money for the Alzheimer’s Association. He chose this organization because his grandfather suffered with the disease. He personalized each plate of goodies with several hand-made snowflakes, and donated $445 to Alzheimers Association and research.
Livia made homemade honey/oat bread, and sold them for $5.00 each. Through her hard work, she raised $520 to donate to a family whose baby was born with trisomy 18 and needs a lot of medical care.
Brothers Garrett and Braeden received $20 between them, so they created a “loose coin campaign” and also did extra jobs around the house to build their fund. They used their money to create 12 birthday bags for CARES in Farmington Hills, a center who resources the homeless and hurting. Their birthday bags contained cake mix, frosting, candles, birthday table cloth, napkins and balloons with a small toy tucked in. Garrett said, “We would gladly do another project like this in the future.”
Braeden adds, “Our family has supported us and we couldn’t have done it without them. We would like to thank Ward Church for giving us an opportunity to help others.”
If you needed inspiration to serve, it doesn’t get much better than stories like these! You can explore our serving positions at ward.church/serve. Questions for Cindy about finding your spot on one of the many serve teams? Contact her at firstname.lastname@example.org.