We are so grateful for a wonderful year of seeing God work in the lives of the families we serve. We have made so many connections this year and we are richer for knowing families in poverty as well as many of you personally. We are grateful for the prayer and financial support that has sustained us this year. We have been kept.
Our family and Project Connect Nashville’s volunteers have been witness to many individuals growing in their understanding of what it means to be a follower of Jesus. This is in a community that is the fastest growing pocket of poverty in the state of Tennessee and the fastest growing zip code for children being removed from their parents. Growing poverty in this concentrated area is a “side effect” to Nashville’s growth.
2014 Project Connect Nashville Highlights:
- Served over 2,400 meals for the homeless and hungry (families in poverty) this year in partnership with churches through Soul Feast, special holidays and in our home
- Engaged over 1,200 volunteers and missions teams from across the United States (and 15 churches locally) sharing the Gospel through coordinating Backyard Bible Camps, garden work days (we built 2 community gardens), back to school events, holiday celebrations and other community building opportunities
- Coordinated production of over 200 food boxes to families with low resources
- 30 individuals (clients) and countless volunteers (providing meals and childcare) participated in our pilot “faith and finance” 8-week courses
- Helped 12 families find permanent housing and created a safety net preventing over 20 families from becoming homeless
- We have 9 people in mentor and discipleship relationships (a major focus of growth in 2015)
- PCN began a mentor / mentee adult softball league and a mentor program for children living in extreme poverty fostering growth and hope
- Helped craft numerous resume’s and job placements
- Partnered with churches and local organizations to provide hundreds of coats and blankets to families in need
We are excited and hope-filled as we look to 2015. We will continue to share the love of Christ through budgeting classes, sports leagues that match mentors with mentees, Bible studies and Backyard Bible Camp. We will be tripling the size of one of our community gardens which will create spaces for church partners. And there are more neat opportunities in the works for Madison. Most importantly, we will continue to partner with churches that will take these families under their wing and love on them.
As full-time missionaries living in Nashville, we are learning a new culture and using the resources that we have to share the love of Christ. Our home has become a safe place for friends to gather (Michelle has learned the art of cooking for large groups!). We use our home to minister to the hurting and lonely, and sometimes for laundry (thankfully we were gifted an energy efficient washing machine). We frequently transport people to church, to see a doctor or a job interview. Just like missionaries that serve abroad, our “work” is the work of relationship. We need people who will catch the vision and help us continue the important work of connecting individuals in need to churches and families. The areas we serve are resource deprived. Help us connect with hope and opportunity.
Every gift is important. Please use Paypal to donate online or send your tax-deductible gift to: Project Connect, Inc., 1508 Douglas Avenue, Nashville, TN 37206.
Thanks to our wonderful Board of Directors in 2014. Duffy Betterton (new), Joel Anderson, Jeremy Kelton, Jessica Basinger and Kerry Haymaker. Special thanks to our “honorary” board member Bill Seaver for his expertise and guidance and to our volunteer and church family network who, without you, this work in 2014 could not have been possible.