Little acts of kindness and generosity can add up and create a big impact.
That’s the mission statement behind Emmanuel Church student ministry’s annual Be the Change campaign, which runs through October and ends Nov. 6.
The church’s five campuses — Seymour, Greenwood, Franklin, Banta and Garfield Park — are partnering with Iglesia Exodo in Cartagena, Colombia, to provide hope at Christmastime to 800 kids who wouldn’t have much of a Christmas otherwise.
Money raised through the campaign will fund special Christmas activities at the church, family Christmas dinners and gifts to open on Christmas Day.
Keia Blair, student director for the Seymour campus, said the overall goal is to raise $12,000. For the Seymour location, they are aiming for $1,500.
“Last year, they raised $9,000, so we upped our goal a little bit,” she said.
So far this month, the Seymour student ministry, which consists of around 30 youth in grades 7 to 12, has sold hot chocolate and T-shirts and conducted a Cupcakes for Colombia event.
Now, they are seeking donations for a Fall Fling event, which is set for 5:30 to 7:30 p.m. Sunday at the church, 1849 First Ave., Seymour. Hayrides, food, pumpkin carving and painting, carnival games, bounce houses, a cupcake walk, a hot chocolate bar, a popcorn bar and face painting are among the features.
There is no admission fee, but tickets must be purchased for the food and activities people choose to do, so bring cash. The event is open to the public.
“We would love for people to come,” Blair said.
The students also are looking for donations for a gift basket raffle at the event, and they have been visiting local businesses to gain their support.
“It has been a lot of fun planning it all out, and people have been so generous,” said Alivia Goldsberry, a member of the student ministry. “Going to all of the businesses, a lot of them are super willing to give.”
Students have signed up to help with individual tasks at the Fall Fling.
“It has been super cool to see their creativity in wanting to create things that they think people will buy into and support them in,” Blair said of the fundraising activities.
“It’s super cool for adults to take a step back and let the students lead just because I think student leadership is super important and super powerful,” she said. “Just being able to see the way that they are supported through the things that they are planning, I think that has been the coolest part, just being able to step back and say, ‘Hey guys, this is your thing, you guys take ownership and you are becoming young leaders in your community and in your church.’”
If anyone can’t be at the Fall Fling or they just want to donate toward the Seymour campus’ fundraising efforts, they can visit ppay.co/YAw8V_ckrzQ, enter the amount and select “Seymour Campus” from the drop-down menu.
“We will send the money to the church (Exodo) to allow them to do the Christmas activities and dinner and gifts,” Blair said.
If you go
What: Fall Fling Be the Change fundraiser
When: 5:30 to 7:30 p.m. Sunday
Where: Emmanuel Church, 1849 First Ave., Seymour
Who: Open to the public
Cost: Admission is free, but tickets will be available to purchase for food and activities, so bring cash
Details: Hayrides, food, pumpkin carving and painting, carnival games, bounce houses, a cupcake walk, a hot chocolate bar, a popcorn bar and face painting
Donate: Scan the QR code or visit ppay.co/YAw8V_ckrzQ, enter the amount and select “Seymour Campus” from the drop-down menu
Information: Call Keia Blair at 812-528-3545 or visit facebook.com/groups/emmanuelseymourcampus