Swain County Congregations for Children (C4C) is kicking off! We will be hosting a meeting at 7:00 pm on Thursday, November 17 in the fellowship hall to share information about how poverty impacts children and families in Swain County and to discuss ways that all churches can work together to transform lives.
We will share information about the 5 focus areas as well as specific opportunities to make a difference with children and families. Please invite your friends from other churches (and come too!) to learn more about your role in this mission.
Please pray for C4C as we begin this critical new mission.
What is C4C?
Congregations for Children, an initiative of the United Methodist Church, transforms the lives of children and families impacted by poverty through collaboration with public schools.
C4C is the newest mission of our church, and we have received a $1,000 Missional Engagement Grant from the Smoky Mountain District of the Western North Carolina Conference.
C4C in Swain County will involve all interested churches because much more can be accomplished by working together with other denominations.
Five focus areas have been identified: Poverty Awareness and Advocacy, K-3 Literacy, Basic Needs, Family Engagement, & Support for School Staff.
Pray that we are able to determine the best course of action for our community.
What Does C4C Look Like in Swain County?
Linda Dills is the C4C Swain County contact, and Evan Clapsaddle will be the Bryson City UMC’s C4C representative. As the overall C4C process moves forward, churches work collectively, seeking solutions that focus on poverty reduction.
→ Understanding Poverty and Advocacy
C4C provides opportunities for our faith communities to grow in understanding of and in response to poverty. Getting to know our neighbors provides opportunities to understand their daily lives and to find ways to better respond.
→ K-3 Literacy
Literacy is directly related to school success. 75% of prison inmates are high school dropouts and 80% are illiterate. Reading is a critical component to success. Churches can be engaged in initiatives during and/or after school. These programs might include tutoring, mentoring and Reading Buddy, as well as other reading programs.
→ Basic Needs
It is hard to work, study, and learn on an empty stomach. Inadequate food, clothing, shelter, etc., is very real for many of our neighbors. Provision of basic needs are also part of the plan, but not central to it.
→ Family Engagement
This is an important part of the C4C process of providing support to young children so they may have success in their lives. Building relationships through family engagement helps to provide support to those who seek a way out of the trap of poverty.
→ Support for School Staff
Help teachers and school staff be able to provide the learning experience they hope for all children. To do this we will be working with the school staff and administration to determine the best ways to offer support to the schools.
PRAY for C4C and ask for the Holy Spirit’s guidance in finding your place in this opportunity to transform lives.