In the past 24 hours I have received a lot of good questions, ones that I probably should have thought of already (but hey, that is why I have you guys to keep in check!). So here we go with a full fledged FAQ post! Hopefully this will help out.
Q: Yo Meredith, this is cool and all, but what exactly are you going to be doing there?
A: Wow. Solid question. I will be working with Apache Youth Ministries which is basically an awesome youth center. The high school students come hang out everyday after school for a few hours, come to a youth night on thursdays, and to d-groups (bible study) on tuesdays. As part of the team I will be building relationships with the high school girls, leading d-groups with the other female leaders, and I will be the person in charge of organizing, developing, and planning all of our retreats and trips. This will include a fall and spring retreat, a trip to a conference for Native teens in Missouri, and hopefully a lot of cool trips for the kids to see different concerts or things outside of the reservation.
Q: Cool! So you will be like a youth minister?
A: Sort of. The difference is that I am part of a team and I also have studied poverty and development. So in addition to the youth ministry part I will be working to engage the students in transformational development, that is developing them both spiritually and economically. My goal is to help these kids know Jesus and also help them rise out of poverty. I want to understand their culture, help them retain their native identity, and also enable them to rise out of the generational poverty in which they are stuck.
Q: That is pretty neat.
A: That is not a question, but I agree with the sentiment.
Q: Ok, so you want me to give you money, but what is the money going towards? Pizza?
A: The money that I am asking for will be broken down as follows:
One Time Outgoing Budget $1500
Monthly Budget $43,200 annually
Living expenses $3050 monthly
Ministry expenses $550 monthly
Student care $175
Q: How helpful! Tell me again why these kids need my support?
A: These kids are stuck in generational poverty, meaning their families have been poor for many years, and it is very hard to rise out of that. In addition, these students deal with a lot of hard stuff. Every one of my students knows someone who has either killed themselves or been murdered. They deal with sexual abuse, abandonment, drugs/alcohol, and really any terrible thing you could think of pretty regularly. So the only way to start a process of change is to walk alongside them and engage them in understanding the saving power of Jesus Christ. I want to combine that with transformational development in order to combat the multi-faceted poverty that exists on reservations such as this one.
Q: Ok, this has been enlightening, but I still want to know more. How do I do that?
A: Email me (email@example.com). Let’s set up a time for lunch, dinner, or coffee, and I would love to express to you my deep passion for this ministry and my vision for how to help these teenagers. Also, email me your address! And I will send you the beautiful packet of information I have printed out. You know you want one.
Q: Ok, I'm in, but I don't need your packet, I just want to give money right this second! ASAP! Instant gratification! Can I do that?
A: Well sure! Thanks to a very helpful suggestion I have set up a campaign on fundly.com. If you want to give a one-time donation you can do it there. Also, you rock.