Dignity Always Matters
– Matthew 10:29-31
A Story Continued…
You might remember Cherelle’s story of “Dignity Restored” from last summer’s Promise Camp. (If not you can refresh your memory by going to our Impact Stories tab.) Coming to camp from a very poor family and having recently lost her little brother to cancer, Cherelle had arrived with only the clothes she was wearing, a tee shirt to sleep in, and very little else. When her counselors became aware of her embarrassment over her situation compared to the other girls in her cabin, they were able go to WalMart to purchase a couple changes of clothes, a cool nightshirt and even a hairbrush to fix her lovely long brown hair. Surprised and thankful, Cherelle was able to enjoy her week with her new friends, while learning that God had created her for a purpose with “The Right Stuff.” She left Promise Camp with a new sense of self-worth and knew she could hardly wait to come back this year.
Here’s where Cherelle’s story gets complicated.
Cherelle also has a mentor through Family Guidance’s One2One Mentoring program. (We’ll call her Fran.) On one of their weekly outings this Spring, Fran wanted to give Cherelle a real treat. Since it was close to prom time for the schools in the area, even though Cherelle is not old enough to be going to a prom, Fran took her to a friend’s hair styling salon to get a prom-worthy up-do. In the course of the process, it was found that Cherelle had head lice. Fran immediately called her Family Guidance mentoring supervisor for advice. She also bought a treatment kit and gave it to the broken-hearted little girl who was sure now she would not be allowed to go to camp.
Because the parents experienced condemnation before when lice were discovered by the kids’ school, Fran’s supervisor wanted to approach this situation with practical compassion and kindness. And through the generosity of our donors, she was able to go to WalMart and Target and purchase pillows, pillow covers and cases, mattress covers, sheets and blankets, as well as combs and brushes for the whole family. She also brought them 2 more treatment kits along with some camp toiletries for Cherelle. Her Mom and Dad were amazed and blessed as they experienced the love and mercy of Christ in such a tangible way.
The Body of Christ
We do not relate this story to embarrass anyone. Rather, we tell it to show how many moving parts are dedicated to the well-being of one child and her family. Cherelle’s camp counselors, mentor, mentoring supervisor, and our program supporters have all poured their love into her life. This summer as she attends Promise camp, Cherelle will see some old friends, make some new ones, and learn how to live “Life On Purpose.” That’s not only the Promise Camp theme this year. It’s a word for all of us to live by. Every choice we make has the potential to bless someone with the love of Jesus. Let’s not miss the opportunities.
Over 80% of Promise Campers and their families live in poverty. Your support enables us to help our most vulnerable neighbors in a discreet and dignified way.