Tag Archives: Head Start

Bathing Suits for “Jump Start”

Last summer, our congregation made a difference in the lives of thirty 2-, 3-, and 4-year-old children who participated in Luzerne County Head Start’s summer program. Through your generosity, we were able to provide these children, many of whom live with financial, physical, social, learning, and/or family challenges, with bathing suits and towels for their visit to the JCC Day Camp–a highlight of their summer program.

The Service and Mission Ministry Team is hoping to continue our outreach for the children enrolled in this year’s “Jump Start” program. Your monetary support will be used to provide each child with a new bathing suit and towel so that they all will have the appropriate items for attending camp. Team members will be in the narthex before Sunday service and outside Fellowship Hall after service on June 12, 19, 26, and July 3 to accept donations.

Please join us in this ministry as we continue to work together to provide for the needs of God’s children. Thank you.


Kids Program Needs Your Help

As part of the Church and Community Ministry Team’s mission statement ‘to seek out areas of human need, to present those needs to the congregation, and to initiate actions to meet the needs’, we will be asking for donations to support children enrolled in Head Start’s summer “Jump Start” program.

“Jump Start” works with children who will be participating in Head Start’s preschool program in September and who face extenuating factors in their social, developmental, and/or family situations which put them at greater risk of not reaching their potential. The goal is to work with them and their families prior to the start of the school year to begin addressing their needs as soon as possible so that they can more fully participate in and benefit from the program.

“Jump Start” is built around a summer camp experience where children learn while having the opportunity to be outdoors in the Wilkes-Barre Head Start Center’s award-winning playground where they participate in various activities, including a water play area. They also visit the JCC camp where they get to use the pool. For many of the children this will be their only chance to enjoy playing outside in a safe and instructive environment. Our goal is to purchase bathing suits for each of the 30 children who will be enrolled and to provide each with a beach towel.

From late May through early June members of the Church and Community Team will be in the Narthex before service and outside the fellowship room following service to accept monetary donations for the bathing suits as well as contributions of child size beach towels.

The generosity of our COCU family is a living example of our faith as we do the work Jesus has defined for us– to open our eyes to the needs of others, to open our hearts to those in need, and to extend our hands to fill those needs.


Church Without Walls- Sunday, May 3rd

Church without Walls is an opportunity for congregation members, friends and visitors to participate in community service projects throughout the day.  We will begin the day with a condensed worship at 10 a.m. in Fellowship Hall.  After worship, we will break into our work groups to begin our projects for the day.

Church without Walls is an opportunity to be a church out in the surrounding communities involved in hands on mission projects to build fellowship among our church members and community. The chosen projects and the community members they help will provide a collaborative framework for a faith-building experience.

If you would like to get involved in any of the projects listed below please call Lesley O’Boyle at the church office at 570-288-8434.  There are projects for all ages, skill levels and abilities.

Celebration:  Come and join the Celebration Team at Wesley Village for our Church Without Walls project on Sunday, May 3rd at 10:00 a.m. We will join the residents at Wesley Village and Make a Joyful Noise for a few fun hours of singing and fellowship. We’ll need some singers and bakers to make this project a success.

Church & Community:  With your gardening hats and gloves, join the Church and Community Ministry Team in the landscaping of a local Head Start center for our Church Without Walls project. Together with the Property Team, we will weed and plant at the center on Meyer St. in Edwardsville.

Additionally, the Church and Community Ministry Team will provide bathing suits and towels to approximately 30 children of the Head Start Jump Start program. This summer program includes water activities and a week at the JCC camp for which these items are needed. Partner with us by donating a child sized beach towel. A collection box will be in the Narthex.

Education:  As a part of Church Without Walls, the Education Ministry Team would like to invite everyone to participate in the 3rd Annual JDRF Walk to Cure Diabetes with the walk team, “Friends and Family for a Cure.” You can register for the walk or make a donation to the team by visiting the team page at http://www2.jdrf.org/goto/friendsandfamily or in person on the day of the walk. The JDRF Walk to Cure Diabetes is on Sunday, May 3rd at PNC Field in Moosic (home of the Scranton/Wilkes-Barre RailRiders). Registration starts at 9:00 A.M. and the walk begins at 10:00 A.M. There will be food, entertainment, and vendors.

The Education Ministry Team will also be taking donations of items to be collected for bags for patients at the First Hospital.  We are collecting crayons, notebooks with no spiral wire bindings, pencils, activity books (puzzles, sudoku, etc.)  Items can be dropped off to Lesley O’Boyle in the church office.  On May 3rd, we will make cards and organize the items donated into the bags and deliver them to First Hospital.

Finance:  The Finance Ministry Team will be providing and serving a meal to the men of VISION on May 15th when they are staying at St. Stephen’s church.

Member Care & Development:  Member Care & Development will sanitize the Indoor Play Area at the Wyoming Valley Children’s Association.

Mission:  Can’t travel to Honduras to build schools and churches, but still want to participate in a meaningful mission project?   No worries!  We have two volunteer opportunities for you right here in the greater Wyoming Valley.

The Mission Ministry Team has committed to two Church Without Walls activities, and we’re looking for church members who would like to volunteer for one (or both!) of these projects.  It is not necessary to be a member of any particular church Ministry Team.

No special skills required.  Just a desire to serve.

1)  St. Vincent Soup Kitchen, Wilkes-Barre.  Sunday, May 3, 2015, 9am-1pm, to make sandwiches, set-up and serve.

2)  Habitat for Humanity.  Saturday, May 2, 2015, approximately 10am-2pm, to prepare and serve lunch to volunteers working on a Habitat home at a location in the greater Wilkes-Barre area.

Please contact Evelyn Kersey (at 570-696-544 or ekersey@epix.net) or the church office to sign up for one of these activities.  Thanks!

Personnel:  The Personnel Ministry Team of COCU has chosen “Sleep Tight” as their project for Church without Walls Sunday in May. All are invited to participate by donating new pajamas for children of all ages. Please drop the pajamas in the donation box located in the entrance to worship or to the church office by April 26th and do not gift wrap them. They will then be donated to local agencies to be distributed as needed. With your help we can make a great deal of children snug and happy!

Program Planning:  Program Planning will be putting together Mission Central Hygiene Kits in Fellowship Hall.

Property and Church & Community:  With your gardening hats and gloves, join the Property Ministry Team in the landscaping of a local Head Start center for our Church Without Walls project. Together with the Church & Community Ministry Team, we will weed and plant at the center on Meyer St. in Edwardsville.

Stitch Ministry:  Stitch Ministry will be making tie blankets in Fellowship Hall which will be donated to local community organizations.



Christmas Giving to Those in Need

Please prayerfully consider how you can help our community this Christmas. Here are some opportunities that COCU is sponsoring:

2009 CHRISTMAS BASKET PROGRAM – A member of the Church and Community Ministry Team will be in the Narthex on Sunday to accept your donations in support of the Christmas Food Baskets which will be distributed to 75 needy families on December 18. A $15.00 donation will buy a $15.00 gift certificate to be used toward the purchase of perishable food items. The total cost of the certificates for 75 families is $1,125.00. Will you please help us reach our goal? Donations can also be mailed to the Church office. Please make your checks payable to COCU and marked “Christmas Baskets.” Additionally, food items are needed – Canned potatoes (sweet and white), cranberry sauce, stuffing mix, and candy canes. Please bring your donations to the stage in Fellowship Hall or the Narthex. Thank you for your participation in this wonderful ministry. (Contact: Mike Little)

EARLY HEAD START CHRISTMAS – DECEMBER 7 – FELLOWSHIP HALL Contributions of books (from Dollar store) for children –infant to 3 years – and cookies needed. Please place cookies and books in church office on December 7. THANK YOU. (Contact: Mike Little)

Donations of Clean, Warm Winter Wear and Blankets are Needed!!! If you have extra gloves, hats, scarves, jackets, coats, blankets (anything that would keep someone warm that is exposed to the cold for long periods of time) please drop them off into the large barrel in Fellowship Hall. Donations will be given to places like V.I.S.I.O.N. and Ruth’s Place to keep men and women warm this winter. Any donation would be greatly appreciated. (Contact: Lesley O’Boyle)