DECEMBER 2018 NEWSLETTER

Updated: Dec 19, 2019


• McAdams Golf Classic in September was a huge success! Thank you to all who participated! We had 18 teams and increased our sponsorships compared to last year’s event.

• The Open House in October gave our guests an opportunity to see the rooms we’ve added to the McAdams facility. Our staff and volunteers were on hand to share about their part at McAdams. We enjoyed meeting some new faces and would love to have you come by and see us if you were unable to make it to the Open House – give us a call at (316) 239-6472.

• During this time of year, we all have many opportunities to give financially to help local ministries, please consider us for your year-end giving! Thank you.

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A note from the Director, Chuck Knowles –

As I prepare for this holiday season, I realize that my list of blessings, this year, is long. In fact, I am sure that I have forgotten more of my blessings than I remember. The past couple of weeks we've had a foster child in the Day School who, at a young age, suffered a head injury. The injury affected her mobility and speech; often it is difficult to understand her when she speaks. One day, as lunch was winding down, I was going around the table asking each student if they needed anything else before dismissing for class. When I asked the handicapped student if she needed anything, she replied, "a hug". As I count my blessings this year, the hug will be at the top of my list. Every day we have many opportunities to make life-changing interactions with our students. I would like to extend an invitation to you, to support McAdams financially and invest in the lives of the youths we work with.

* * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * A note from one of our Day School teachers, Sonna Ludlow

- One of the most challenging aspects of the McAdams Day School program, where we have a different group of kids every day, is finding ways to encourage our students. Some kids show up for a day, and we never see them again. Other kids may attend our program for several days. In both of these groups, some come back to the program off-and-on throughout the school year. This transient schedule makes it very difficult to bond with students or get to know them on a deeper level. Most of our youth are facing crises; whether of their own making or those caused by others, they live from crisis to crisis. A large percentage of these kids have been disappointed by adults: their parents, social workers, or even adults in the criminal justice system. Therefore, building relationships with and trusting adults is, understandably, very difficult for them.

It’s not hard to find things to criticize about their life or behavior, but our challenge is to look for the nugget of good that is somewhere in every child the Lord puts in our path. This month, we had a student who is very involved in and outspoken about the LGBTQ movement. At McAdams, no topic is off limits when it comes to helping our students navigate their tumultuous life. We also have the freedom, if the student is interested, to share spiritual principles and encourage them to seek God's guidance in their life. One quality that I appreciate in this child is his compassion for others. Even though this young man had struggles of his own, when he saw that I was having a challenging day, he wrote me a letter; a letter of encouragement. It was two pages reminding me of how I helped him and how we help other kids (who aren’t always appreciative of our efforts). I’ve pulled that letter out of my pocket several times to re-read his words when I’m feeling discouraged. When I told him how much his words meant to me, he seemed genuinely surprised that his words of encouragement had such a positive impact on me, an adult.

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A note from one of our Academy teachers, Bev Jackson -

As we enter this season of thankfulness, my teacher-heart is full! The Academy classroom has 15 students, our maximum, and many are eager workers seeking to regain the ground lost from poor choices. One young man named Manny came to us last spring. We’ve seen incredible behavioral progress in him as well as excellent academic work. He is thoughtful and very bright. I’ve been amazed by his insight. One day, Manny and I were talking about how hard things make us stronger and that difficult school work is something to embrace because it strengthens the mind and character. I gave him the example of a tree, how roots grow deeper during drought and stronger through storms. He thought for a minute and then said, “It’s like my hands. Feel this, Mrs. Jackson.” He showed me the callouses on his palms from doing construction work and told me how they used to blister, but now have toughened up. He was able to translate the concept I had shared into something personal. I was blown away! He is a thinker and takes to heart what we say. I’ve had the opportunity to talk with him on several occasions about where he stands with God. He is seeking out advice from the staff regarding life situations. There are times that he will just come stand near me, waiting for an opportunity to talk about what’s on his mind: “Mrs. Jackson, I’m worried about my friend” or “I’m really nervous about something.” As teachers, we try to spend individual time with each of our students, talking through life choices and helping them see how they can make changes. It’s an essential element of what we do at McAdams. The rewards, however, are tremendous. So, to have Manny be so open is really exciting. It lets me know we are making a difference. Please be in prayer for Manny as he goes back to public school in January. Pray that the seeds that have been planted during his time at McAdams will come to fruition. And pray that we will continue to be used by God to make a difference in each of our students’ lives.

#Newsletter #December #2018

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