Kids break open piggy banks to help Urban Ministry


On the morning of April 27, 2011, I got a phone call while getting ready for work that informed me that the Urban Ministry RUSH center’s work SUV had been crushed by a tree during early morning storms. Not knowing what the day would hold, I wrote a Facebook status appealing to anyone who might be able to help us replace that vehicle, since summer was close and we would need it for our mission camps. The SUV’s main purpose was to carry work supplies to homes and pick up donated food from area churches, schools, and restaurants. After a day of severe weather with tragic results, I didn’t believe anyone would read much less be able to fill the request in light of all the damage and destruction.

My godson, Turner Richardson, had other plans. I had read his father’s status about an idea Turner had to raise money for someone affected by the storms. He had told Turner that maybe they could have a competition at his school and reward the class or person who raised the most change. Turner had replied that "maybe the kids would do it because it was the right thing to do." Turner decided that a work van for Urban was his new goal. The whole Richardson family regularly volunteers at Urban Ministry and the Community Church Without Walls. Turner's mother, Meghan, teaches art to the children in the Urban Kids Summer Day Camp program. Turner and his brother Clay broke open their piggy banks to make the first donation of $232. Next they invited their friends and classmates to join, wrote a proposal to their school principal, and the rest is history.

Here’s the grand total:
$232 initial contributin from the kids piggy banks. All their idea. Seriously, no prompting from us.
$124 contribution from our sweet 5 year old friend Emily Brannon
$327.90 from the 5th graders at South Shades Crest Elementary Schools change drive
$240 contributions from friends and family near and far
$214 from Aldersgate United Methodist Church (Turner’s grandparents' church)
$20 from Discovery United Methodist Church (Turner’s church)

Total Raised: $1,157.90! Please note that more than $683.90 was contributed completely by children - humbling.

Mission Camps are now in full swing with the help of our "new-to-us" van. Thanks Turner, Clay, and all your friends. Urban Ministry is a better place because of you.

Deb Welsh is director of volunteer recruitment for the Joe Rush Center for Urban Mission at Urban Ministry Inc., a North Alabama Conference Advance Special ministry.

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