By: Jim Smalley
Site Leader- Bayside Commons Apartment & Resurrection Evangelical Lutheran Church
Hilliard Free Lunch Summer Camp for Kids 2015 is off to a great start! Even with all of the rain we have had great turnout each day with the number of children attending rising! We have seen many familiar faces and have had the opportunity to meet new friends as well. We’ve had water days, balloon relay races, the Hilliard library, and many prizes given away! We want to thank the Columbus State Nursing Students, the librarians, volunteers, teens, and our host sites for all that they do!
What we do – together – is truly a blessing!
At SON Ministries we build up community one respectful, empowering relationship at a time.
[The artwork below was made by Jamil in our camp, a 13 year old boy, and represents our focus on teamwork and making choices that are good for the group of us while at camp.]
“If you work together, it is better than working alone. In soccer if you don’t work together, you can’t score a goal”.- Jamil
By: Emma Kruse
Assistant Site Leader Bayside Commons Apartment & Resurrection Evangelical Lutheran Church; Summer Local Mission College Intern with SON Ministries through Trinity United Methodist Church, Marble Cliff
I just spent 5 months in Europe as a student and while I was there I was worried about what I would do this summer. I had something lined up with a big company in downtown Columbus, but then it all fell apart. I prayed about it a lot and didn’t understand why it wasn’t working out. Then I heard about this opportunity as a Local Mission Intern for the summer with SON Ministries through a partnership with Trinity United Methodist Church of Marble Cliff/Grandview.
After the first day of working here I knew that God had called me to do this; that He steered me away from the other opportunity because this one was meant for me.
I have already in a short time, learned a lot of things about myself. I realized that I enjoy learning about people who are really different from myself. I was raised in Upper Arlington, Ohio, where I surrounded myself with people with very similar values and backgrounds. Meeting people who are from different countries with different upbringings, has really helped me have a different outlook on life.
I have seen God at work in so many ways. One way that stuck out to me had to do with the kids and the functioning of this camp. I saw God at work by bringing these kids to this site, while having them feel compelled to invite their friends, and having parents that are so welcoming of what we are doing. The fact God allows us to feed these kids, give them outside time, and allow this camp to thrive is a miracle in itself.
At SON Ministries we are inspired by the unexpected… Join us!
By Jeremy Raines
Administrative Assistant for Programs
My first week as SON-Ministries’ Administrative Assistant for Programs certainly opened my eyes to the notion of “a job being more than just a job”. Prior to joining the team, I couldn’t help but be drawn in by its passion for serving the community. Yet at the same time, I was unsure how I’d fit into SON- Ministries mission, after all, how can someone new to Hilliard and the surrounding communities feel the same dedication to it as someone who has spent much of their life there? Watching the network of volunteers and staff of the Hilliard Free Lunch Summer Camps serve the community made me realize that my work can be something that reaches far beyond myself, something that reflects what it means to be more Christ-like.
Over the last week I can’t say how many times the kids at the five summer lunch camps surprised me. They radiated hope and joy, regardless of any circumstance that had crossed their families’ journeys. And just as SON-Ministries seeks to build relationships, so too did the kids with each other. Family origins, ethnicity, and subtle language barriers didn’t seem to matter to any of the kids. This above all else has made me realize that just as much as I hope to help each child recognize their own voice and potential, they are ultimately receiving another helping hand from the child to his or her left and right. I’m acknowledging that SON-Ministries is more than an organization, it’s a community, and I’m eager to watch it further grow and develop.
By Brittany White
Horizon Assistant Site Leader- Hilliard Church of Christ
This past week marked my first week working as an assistant site leader at the Hilliard Free Lunch summer camp program- and it was truly remarkable. After a week and a half of training and preparing for the camp I was eager for the kids to arrive and start having fun. This week the staff and volunteers welcomed hundreds of energetic, creative, and amazing children to join us this summer! Instant connections were made over free play, arts and crafts, music, dodge ball games, and everyone’s favorite: water day. In just three days I experienced so much joy out of seeing the kids’ skills and interests- some are true artists, singing German arias on the spot, some are true athletes throwing half court shots, and all of them are some of the most kind hearted, helpful, and cheerful kids I have known. I cannot wait to see how the rest of the summer unfolds and brings many more opportunities for the kids to use their skills and talents to create and build relationships.
At SON Ministries we see the divine in each person; each has a purpose and a voice!