Kids Hope USA
July 23, 2020
Last week we introduced you to Donna and how she was impacted as a mentor as she made a difference in the lives of the at risk youth in her community. While it can feel like a daunting task to impact a generation, when each of us comes together as the church to rely on Jesus, He promises to carry that burden together with us.
Kids Hope USA is a mentoring program where adults with a heart for At Risk Youth are trained to be mentors and sent into the schools to mentor children who need it the most. At-risk students live at-risk lives, often times with no boundaries or ones that make no sense at all. They long for direction, structure, and other life basics. They long for a positive role model, someone who will walk alongside them and love them as Jesus loves. Just one caring adult in a child’s life can change the trajectory of their life in a positive way.
We recently talked with Annette Forster, Regional Director for Kids Hope, regarding the impact COVID has had on those they minister to. “In no other time has there been a greater need for building positive, caring relationships with students who have experienced trauma and isolation through the COVID pandemic,” Forester expressed with concern. She also noted that DCFS has indicated since the closure of schools in mid-March, hotline calls have dramatically decreased, causing concern as many vulnerable children are not around those who may be able to speak on their behalf.
St. Charles Kids Hope Director Julie Kellenberger added, “With school not being in session, we have not been able to meet with them in person. They are missing the one special hour a week they spend with their mentor. Students at home are missing the structure, safety and routine that school gives them.”
With the school year being uncertain for the fall, Kids Hope is still looking to partner together with local schools in some different ways than previous, so there is still an opportunity for you to get involved! Please start by visiting ccclife.org/atriskyouth and select the school you would like to volunteer with.
In the meantime, we can be praying for this crucial ministry. Pray that mentoring will not only continue for existing relationships, that schools will be on board for either in person or virtual mentoring. Also, we can lift up the emotional and mental well-being of the students and their families. With the rise of uncertainty in their homes, this can lead to increased anxiety about the safety and security of their lives.
There is a need for new mentors for the St. Charles and Aurora communities. Again, if you are interested please visit ccclife.org/atriskyouth and select the school you are interested in serving!