Friday, June 17, 2011

Preschool Graduation and Classroom Celebrations

A big congratulations to our PreK graduates of 2011!

What a nice turn out we had with family and friends of the children of the Dayton Christian Center on Friday, June 17th. Of course it always helps when the spotlight is on your kid and let us not forget cake.

The celebration began with a song from 3 of our School Age students, a welcome from Tasha Johnson, Executive Director, and then came the awards. Each classroom gave out awards to their students and in graduation fashion they walked, toddled, or crawled (some even were carried) across the stage to receive them.

We are so blessed to celebrate in moment like this with our families. Many of our students are here from very young ages and to see them "off to school" is pretty awesome and rewarding.

Tuesday, June 14, 2011

Reaping the Whirlwind (in a great way!)

One might be forgiven for thinking that a couple of very selective and tidy mini-tornadoes touched down in two neighborhoods of Dayton last week. Within a very short time, indeed, the two lots in question – 1352 W. Riverview Ave and 1820 East Fifth St – were transformed into beautiful, attractive sites worthy of Better Homes & Gardens.

But the work wasn’t done by the force of nature; it was done by the force of volunteers who gave up their day to come to DXC and clear undergrowth, plant flowers, tend the East Fifth Street Urban Farm and generally straighten up. Another group of volunteers, just as large and just as hardworking, worked inside our main offices on Riverview cleaning, helping our teachers in the classrooms and helping serve lunch to the students.

All in all, over a two-day period (Thursday and Friday) we had 46 truly great people lend their time and talents to DXC for the United Way of Greater Dayton’s Day Action. The volunteers came from local employers Delloite & Touche, Teradata, MCM Electronics, the Berry Network and Fifth/Third Bank

On Thursday, eight employees of Fifth/Third Bank spent the morning in our classrooms playing with the kids, doing crafts, helping with lessons and even taking a field trip with some of the students. Some of even stayed beyond their noon schedule to help serve lunch to the classrooms. There were a lot of smiles and laughs with both the students and the volunteers during the day.

The students got a second dose of fun when about a dozen members of Deloitte and Touche LLP came in to spend their Day of Action helping out in the classrooms. Again, there were games played, slime made, dancing and singing along with some personal attention to lessons given. Other workers, from Teradata, lent a hand washing toys and doing some cleaning chores inside.

At the same time, volunteers from Teradata, and MCM Electronics threw themselves into the dirt, pulling up weeds, planting new flowers and spreading mulch over the gardens at our offices in Riverview. They ripped through the scrub growth like a hurricane, not letting even a brief rain shower stop them. In a few short hours, what was a disheveled, unattractive slope was transformed into a beautiful, landscaped work of art.

Meanwhile, back at the urban farm (on East Fifth Street), Fifth/Third employees showed their talents transplanting tomatoes, spreading mulch, pulling weeds, and clearing encroaching growth away, ignoring the raindrops as their fellow volunteers over on Riverview. In addition, they did a ton of housework, clearing out accumulated trash from the old ESP building at the site and generally straightening the place up, all in four short hours.

There was even a second shift of seven volunteers from Teradata that came in the afternoon to provide the same landscaping services around the Administrative Offices next door to 1352.

As a result, we’ve got a pretty wonderful-looking place now and were able to meet a lot of really great people who we hope will be new friends and family members. No nonprofit organization can survive without volunteers, and it takes a lot of people spending a lot of very dedicated hours to keep DXC running. If it weren’t for enthusiastic, devoted people like the ones we had here last week, we simply wouldn’t be able to provide the services to the community that we do.

We never take our wonderful volunteers for granted. There just aren’t enough of the right words in the English language to express how much we appreciate everyone who spend the day with us Thursday and Friday, and what a huge difference they made for us. With that said, we offer what words we have:

Thank you all, from the bottoms of our hearts!

Saturday, June 11, 2011

Day of Action at the Urban Farm - Media Story

Once again we welcomed multiple waves of volunteers for 2 days of service in conjunction with the United Way of Greater Dayton's Volunteer Connection. Here's just one of the 3 projects we hosted on Friday (6/10/11).

Workers trade printers for pitchforks:

Monday, June 6, 2011

We've had some special visitors this week

We’re always happy to have visitors, but the ones who came in this weekend were a little special.

This past Saturday (June 4) several members of Fairhaven Church took a volunteer bus tour and stopped by DXC to talk with Sarah about volunteer opportunities here at DXC.

We’ve been very proud to have a history with Fairhaven Church members dating back to 2008 when they first came in to help us clean up our building over on East Fifth Street. That started when some of them came in for a Rebuilding Dayton project here. Since then, they have been really dedicated and valuable supporters of DXC. They’ve taken on some pretty hefty projects for us including replacing the annex roof, repainting our current Administrative Offices next door, and even constructing new steps into the basement for safe access to our laundry and other facilities there.

The group, led by Rev. John Wilson, listened as Sarah told them of the programs we provide here and of the wide variety of opportunities to volunteer. One of the things that most impressed the members, and which was emphasized by both Sarah and Rev. Wilson, was that we at DXC believe that volunteering should be a satisfying and enjoyable experience for everyone. To make that a reality, Sarah has developed a program called “Choose Your Own Adventure.” In that program, we invite people who are interested in volunteering with us to come up with their own project. Then, Sarah and the staff do all they can to build a project that fits the needs and wants of the person or group who came up with the idea. We’ve had some amazingly great projects come from that program and we love to hear more ideas. This is something Rev. Wilson and Sarah emphasized and which seemed to strike a chord in the group.

Rev. Wilson had arranged several sites to be seen by his members that day so, sadly, we didn’t get a lot of time to spend with them, but we were very happy for what we did have. But we’re sure we’ll welcome them back whenever they wish to come.