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Good News!

The Pan-Methodist Campaign for Children in Poverty is now on Twitter. We are excited to begin this adventure of entering a new space to engage with all of you.

Please follow the campaign on Twitter:
@PMC4Children; and the campaign will follow you back.


Carolina Region CMEs Launch Life Skills Programs for Children/Youth

youth participants copyCreative life skills workshops and activities were developed for children and youth at the Carolina Region Annual Conference in Columbia. SC. Working with the theme Investing in the Community through our Youth, Dr. Debra Lowe as Director of the Board of Christian Education (BOCE), coordinated workshops and structured activities that provided educational and enriching experiences. Latosia Gibson facilitated a Communications workshop that promoted relationship building through one to one and group verbal interactions. Being able to understand and relate to each other is essential and was emphasized during the workshop. Min. Brenda Springs and LaVette McDaniel worked with children from six through 11 years of age. Youth who participated in the workshop facilitated by Jamea Grace discussed issues teens face in their daily lives. The BOCE and the Board of Evangelism donated teddy bears to children at the local battered women and children’s shelter.

The Rev. Nicole Leak conducted the Write the Vision workshop where youth discussed Habakkuk 2:2 “write down your vision and make it plain on tablets . . .” She explained why it is important to have a plan to shape and realize your goals for the future. Youth learned that the vision should be clear so they know how to proceed to obtain it. They also learned that success can be delayed or blocked without having a vision of where you want to go and or see yourself in the future. Afterwards, Michael Lowe guided the group though a Vision Board activity where they used pictures from magazines to create a pictorial outline of their envisioned future. 


Persistent Care For Children

The partnership of Hood Seminary Faculty (Dr. Mary Love and Dr. Sharon Grant), Hood Alumni (Rev. Dr. Sheldon Shipman, Rev. Kevin Griffin, Rev. Lisa Moore, Rev. Dr. Kenneth Q. James), plus SouthBrook Church and community agencies grows and continues to impact children in the Charlotte, NC Dillehay Community. These partners sponsored a Back-to-School Bash on August 18th and provided workshops for children, youth and parents. After the educational lifting, participants were granted the opportunity to shop for book bags, school supplies, hygiene items and clothes at no cost. Approximately 400 participated and over 300 children/youth received books bags and other items to prepare for the beginning of the school term.

Impact is greater when it is consistent. This cross-denominational and community partnership has committed itself to be engaged with this community three times a year. The Back-to-School Bash was the fifth major lifting event and the team witnessed growth, need meeting and trust building. To God be the glory!


Mission-Minded Church-School Partnerships

by Rev. Lyndy Zabel, Minnesota Conference (UMC) Campaign Liaison

minn-umcThe growing numbers of congregations serving children and reconnecting with their communities is a major movement in the United Methodist Church. Partnering a church family with a public school can be a rewarding experience that blesses students and brings new vitality to the faith of volunteers and the life of the church. There are currently fifty-two such partnerships in our conference. A school is a microcosm of the greater community. Parents everywhere care about their children’s education. Something powerful happens when a church and its members make a sustained, long-term commitment to a local school.

These partnerships are more important than ever, because unfortunately, in almost every small town, suburb or city there are children who struggle to learn for various reasons. Some are food insecure and it’s hard to learn when you’re hungry. English is a second language for more and more of them. Some family situations lead to a lack of adequate supervision, where parents are not around to help with homework. Some even raise a concern about safety.

Education has a direct impact on children’s quality of life and their prospects for the future... 


Serving Children through Partnerships

by Mary Love and Teaira Parker

Over two years ago, the idea of a 501(c)3 was tossed out in a Hood Seminary Children's Ministry class. That idea became a reality with the inception of Big Changes Start Small (BCSS). BCSS is actively engaged in forming partnerships to make a difference in the Dillehay Courts Community in Charlotte, NC. The main partners currently include three area churches (Greenville Memorial A. M. E. Zion Church, First Mount Calvary Baptist Church and Walls Memorial A. M. E. Zion Church) and the Salvation Army. This apartment complex has a Salvation Army Boys and Girls Club on the premises and the youth who attend make up our main target audience.

In August, BCSS, our partners and others sponsored a Back-to-School summit with approximately 225 children, youth and adults in attendance. Each child was given school supplies, a book bag, books, hygiene items, and more. Classes were provided on parenting best practices, bullying and establishing children's ministries that make a difference. In addition…


Reading Rewards Program at Cleaves Memorial CME Church

The Reading Rewards Program addresses a need for literacy improvement within the community. The summer reading program included 10 youth between the ages of 5 and 12, in partnership with their parents, guardian, or responsible adult. Youth were able to choose books based on their reading level and topics of interest. As the youth reached the preset goals of the program, they were awarded prizes and a chance to attend an Ice Cream/Pizza Party. The goals and vision of the program came to fruition this summer, as youth gained self-confidence and developed a love for reading!

To learn more about the program and how you can incorporate it in you ministry click below to read more.


Meeting Children’s Needs: 7th Episcopal District of the CME Church

The local churches of the Seventh Episcopal District of the Christian Methodist Episcopal Church (CME) have several ministries that meet the needs of impoverished youth within their church and community. We are excited to announce the outreach projects that have taken place locally and internationally. Mt. Pisgah CME Church, in Baltimore, MD, is feeding children during the summer months when they are out of school. The meals that Mt. Pisgah provides give families the assurance that their children will have two meals per day during the summer. In Washington, D.C., Miles Memorial CME Church’s Basketball Jamboree 2017 has been a great success. The Basketball Jamboree involved children, teens, and young adults from eight CME churches in the DMV area. This community-wide effort consisted of morning instructions, providing lunches, and participating in basketball tournaments in the afternoons, followed by an award ceremony that acknowledged the winner. Miles Memorial has also reached out to children in poverty within their community through their Pumpkin Patch (October 2016) and Christmas Lights at Columbia Park (December 2016) events.

As an extension of their community outreach, New Hope CME Church partners with the Fusion Community Development Center, Inc., in Washington, DC, to offer music and art programs to youth within their community. Fusion Community Development Center, Inc. (Fusion) is a “nonprofit organization that was created to be an alternative solution for inner city youth.” Their programs “consist of music and arts, life application, behavioral support, computer learning skills, mentoring and court advocacy, making Fusion uniquely situated to address the many problems facing today's inner city youth” New Hope specifically partners with Fusion’s “Fusion Cadets Drum and Bugle Corps” program, which provides musical education for inner city youth. This program currently has 14-15 youth that participate in local community events and parades in the Washington Metropolitan Area. Fusion is a 501 (c) 3 organization that operates by charitable contributions and fundraisers.


Halos of Hope in North Alabama

Often times, our heart strings are pulled when we see the commercials for providing aid to children in third world countries. The children who are living in poverty, malnourished, and struggling. But how often do we stop to ask ourselves “Are there struggling children in my community?” My neighborhood? The answer is YES.
In the state of Alabama, there are NO counties that do not have families living in poverty. has food insecurity and child food insecurity data by county. This is the 2016 map the meal gap data, which uses 2014 US Census data. Check out the link to see where your county ranks!

For whole-household food insecurity
US Rate: 15.4%
Alabama Rate: 18.8%
Highest % County: Wilcox county at 33.0%
Lowest % County: Shelby county at 10.5%

For child-specific food insecurity (rates are much higher!)
US Rate: 20.9%
Alabama Rate: 26.4%
Highest % County: Wilcox county at 36.8%
Lowest % County: Shelby county at 18.4%

In Cullman County, First United Methodist Church of Cullman has partnered with other local churches to form community “Halos of Help”. “In our county, we have 8 different high school districts”, states Melissa Betts, Director of Children & Serve Ministries. “Our church started a backpack feeding program, Knapsacks for Kids, after the April 2011 storms. Since that time, we have become aware of how large a problem food insecurity is in Cullman County."  Statistics provided by state there are 4,783 children in Cullman County who experience food insecurity at some point throughout the month. In response to this staggering number, our Knapsack for Kids volunteers have pulled together, and connected other churches and civic groups to begin serving in their local district. We call these helping rings, “Halos of Help”.

In 2015, there was very little organized assistance for those who were food insecure. But today, all eight districts/halos have established teams ready to serve:

  • City of Cullman- Cullman FUMC & Alabama Credit Union
  • Cold Springs- Alabama Credit Union
  • Fairview- Fairview FUMC, Baileyton UMC & Alabama Credit Union
  • Good Hope- Good Hope Baptist Church & Day Star Church

Kentucky Conference Children's Sabbath

The Kentucky Conference AMEZ continues with its initiatives to care for children. Its churches have been involved with:

  1. “Miracle on Broadway” that has provided toys, blankets, clothes, cleaning supplies, and personal items for children who are homeless.
  2. the “Angel Tree Prison Fellowship Ministry” that provides gifts to the children of incarcerated persons.
  3. “Angel Tree Ministry” that provides gifts to children of low-income families in local communities.
  4. “Blessings in a Backpack" (to provide hats, gloves, scarfs, socks, and personal items to school children) and "Project Warm" (to assist with shelter for homeless children).
  5. working with local schools.

The above “Children’s Sabbath” celebration program cover was for an event that brought the various districts of the Annual Conference together to celebrate their involvement in the lives of children.



Click on

for examples of congregations and annual conferences in action for children in poverty

Visit the 'Be Involved' page to see how congregations and annual conferences are reporting on their faith in action for children in poverty.


Reading the Campaign booklet is a first step for becoming familiar with this initiative. It offers information and resources to encourage your activism. It can be viewed and downloaded at The Campaign page.

We hope that you will contribute information about your work with children. Descriptions of your ministries will be helpful to others who want to deepen their involvement to care for children in poverty.

You can influence the Campaign’s effectiveness.  Be involved.  Offer your ideas.  Encourage others.

Trusting in God, we dare to envision a world in which every child experiences love, care, and hope. Together we can be the difference in the lives of children in poverty.


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