Tag Archives: Akron Ohio

Project Shine

Story by Mark Ford


Many negative things have been written about today’s youth- how they are self-(or selfie) centered and lazy.  In today’s blog, though, we’d like to share a different side of local teens as they serve with one of our partner ministries, Project Shine.

Project Shine’s mission is “to connect individuals to Christ through basic home improvement and ministry in our communities, while spiritually investing in our participants.”  Area youth commit to serve for a week (late afternoon Sunday through Friday evening) where they are challenged both physically in their work teams, as well as, spiritually during daily devotions and praise and worship times.

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Bhutanese Refugees face a ticking clock of self-sufficiency
laden with many hurdles and challenges along the way

Story by Tom Crain
Durga, Nirmala, Bishnu, and Kailash  Ghimirey


Durga Ghimirey is one of 120,000 Bhutanese refugees being relocated around the world. He is a member of the Lhotshampas, the unlucky ethnic group in Bhutan who fell victim to ethnic cleansing.

As a teen, he fled to India, then was trucked to Goldhap, one of seven refugee camps in Nepal. Here, he spent nearly two decades highlighted by his marriage to wife Bishnu and raising two children, daughter Nirmala and son Kailash. He and his family lived in a cramped bamboo hut without running water or electricity. He received rice rations once a month having to make them last, earning extra money to pay for supplemental food or having his family go hungry. He and his family experienced several bouts of life threatening starvation and illnesses, and witnessed other camp residents dying all around them.

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Walk a Mile in My Shoes


(Editor’s note: this originally appeared in the
Love Akron Network Ford’s Focus)
By Pastor Mark Ford


The other day I almost fell out of my chair while watching a national newscast because, to my surprise, the name of a pastor friend from California was mentioned.  Pastor Rick Cole, Lead Pastor of Capital Christian Center in Sacramento, was being interviewed for a human interest piece.  Pastor Cole revealed to his very large congregation that he had made a decision to become homeless for two weeks and live on the streets incognito.  With only a backpack, he spent 14 days sleeping in alleyways, eating what and when he could, and listening to people’s stories.  He said the experience changed his life forever.  For those two weeks, he climbed into the world of the invisible and ignored and personally experienced the loneliness and indignity that homeless people endure every day.

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Project RISE Takes A Ride On The Polar Express

By Staff Report
Santa and kids on the CVNP Polar Express

All Aboard! Thanks to the Cuyahoga Valley National Park and Scenic Railroad, Project RISE took a trip to the “North Pole” on the Polar Express December 10th, 2014. The Project RISE Staff accompanied nearly 60 people including families and liaisons from local shelters, and doubled up families. The train departed the Akron Northside Station for a fun filled 2 hour round trip.

Every child received a sleigh bell and a golden ticket as they boarded the train in cozy pajamas. Car No. 3 was completely filled with smiling faces as Ranger Pamela Machuga read “The Polar Express” book by Chris Van Allsburg. The elves took the lead in singing Christmas carols as all participants enjoyed a nice cup of hot cocoa and a delicious, fresh baked cookie. Santa also made an appearance aboard the Polar Express.

Project RISE takes great pride in being able to bring enrichment programs to the children who are experiencing homelessness in the Akron area.

This program is a collaborative effort by Akron Public Schools, local shelters and the Akron community to provide supplemental educational services to children and youth experiencing homelessness.  During the 2013-2014 school year, Project RISE Identified and served close to 1,500 students experiencing homelessness.

For more information on Project RISE and how you can help, please contact Debra Manteghi at 330-761-2969 or dmantegh@akron.k12.oh.us

Summit Education Initiative Progress of the Findley Adopt-a-School Initiative 2014

Findley CLC

Derran Wimer, Executive Director of the Summit Education Initiative, reported on the progress of the Findley Adopt-a-School initiative at The Love Akron Network’s annual breakfast on September 30th.  We are very pleased to offer you  the text of Mr. Wimer’s report.

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