Kids Hope USA
Princeton CRC continues to partner with Brookwood Elementary School through the KID'S HOPE USA (KHUSA) program to mentor at-risk students. 2016-2017 makes 17 years of this great partnership. We have 11 mentors and teachers have referred 11 students who need one-one attention socially and/or academically. We are thankful for the 11 Prayer Partners who are a key component in this partnership. Nothing this important should be attempted without prayer. The students we mentor are in grades 1-5. KID'S HOPE USA takes one church, one child, and one hour a week to transform the lives of three people: a child, a mentor, and a prayer partner. KHUSA has given Princeton CRC the framework to recruit, screen, train, match, and supervise our own members to develop one-to-one relationships with at-risk children. KHUSA mentors commit to a weekly one-hour meeting, during the lunch/recess hour or after school, where they can build a life-changing relationship.
The impact of KHUSA has already been proven to be an awesome vehicle for Christ to show His love to His children through servants of the church. We hold social events such as a Fall Festival, a Christmas Party, a Valentine Pizza Party, and an Easter Party, as well as a celebration at the end of the year. Comments from teachers included “I enjoyed the excitement of watching the students look forward to seeing their mentor." and, " Thank you for everything you do to make a difference in our student's lives." Many parents have also let us know how important the program is to their child.
n November 2011, Princeton CRC started another ministry called the Hand2Hand Backpack Club. This program provides healthy weekend food to students who are in need so that they have a greater opportunity to succeed academically, emotionally, and physically. On Fridays, or the last day of each school week, a child receives a bag of 6-8 non-perishable food items in a backpack. We continue to serve on average about 35-40 students each year. It has been a well received program and Princeton CRC is able to have a positive impact on more students and families within our community.
Each school year we also collect items the teachers at Brookwood have informed us that they need. In the fall we collected school supplies such as dry erase markers and erasers, glue sticks, hand sanitizer, tissues and anti-bacterial wipes. Some families find it a challenge to provide their children with these kind of supplies. We collected over 100 of these supplies that the teachers shared with the students. We will be collecting hats, gloves, and mittens this winter. The Christmas Food Boxes our church provides each December is shared with families that let us know they need this care package. We share these boxes with our community and the Kid's Hope USA program families at Brookwood. Each year these families let us know how much it is appreciated.
Princeton church looks forward to continuing the relationships we have built over the years as we continue to use this program as another way to show God's love. KHUSA and Hand2Hand have had a wonderful impact on Princeton Church, Brookwood School, and the families we work with through the programs. We have a waiting list of students because parents and Brookwood staff have seen the difference mentoring makes in a child's life. We hope and pray that these programs continue to grow with more who are able to mentor and pray. May Kid's Hope USA prosper with God’s guidance.