Never too young to make a difference!

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For the last five years, Kathy Bradshaw, Director of Children’s Ministry at First United Methodist Church Winter Park (FUMCWP), has shown our clients that a person of any age or stature can make a difference. Every summer, she oversees a week-long summer camp for the fourth and fifth graders of the church. Their group is called Children’s Ministries FUMCWP. Kathy educates them about what’s going on in the community and how they can help.

“Serving at the Coalition has been a great fit for everyone. It’s a very tangible way for the children to contribute,” said Kathy.

This summer, they were able to come to the Coalition the day before we officially moved men into our new Men’s Service Center. Children’s Ministries FUMCWP spent the first half of their day in the dorm for disabled and elderly clients, making the beds and putting pillows in their cases. Next, they had fun sorting and organizing 250 pairs of shoes according to size.

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Volunteering at the Coalition is the most meaningful thing we do all week,” said Kathy. “Parents have told me that when their children get home from summer camp, helping at the Coalition is all they talk about.”

In the past the children have helped make peanut butter and jelly sandwiches for our clients. Even the seemingly “small” things can make the biggest difference. The children’s willingness to give up a day of their summer, to make a difference, spoke volumes to our clients.

“When the children volunteer at the Coalition, they learn that homeless people aren’t scary or mean,” Kathy explained. “They also learn that there are homeless children at their schools, who are no different from them.”

We are so grateful for all that Kathy, the Children’s Ministry, and First United Methodist Church Winter Park do for the Coalition. The time they took to help on Tuesday, June 24, 2014 made a big impact on move-in day for our homeless men. Thank you again!