Friday, August 23, 2013

New Drumline preps for Bulldog season

Bulldog events will have a new source of spirit and energy with the addition of the MCH Bulldog Drumline. This year will be the first time MCH has had a drumline to perform at pep rallies and home football games. Colin Campbell, spiritual development minister at MCH, will lead the 11 students in rallying the crowds this year.

“Marching bands have been associated with American football for over a century and the drumline is arguably the highest profile of all the individual sections,” Campbell said. “The drumline can lead chants, create energy between plays, and get the crowd invested and cheering on their team. The drums will not only create an audible energy at the games, but also provide a unique visual aesthetic as well.”

Campbell said the students will work on discipline, teamwork, communication and self confidence through their participation in drumline. Each student is learning to read music and proper playing techniques as well as how to perform at a high level both individually and as a group. They went through a week-long camp focused on structure and fundamentals before school began. Now they are working on their first “cadences,” or performance pieces, as they prepare for the football season.

“I am proud of the work done so far,” said Campbell. “The students are learning quickly and pushing each other to get better in a positive way. “

Campbell expressed his gratitude to campus administrators Charlsie Whitney and Chuck Russell as well as vice president for residential services Moe Dozier for their support of the new program. Keep an eye out for our new MCH Bulldog Drumline this upcoming season! 

Thursday, August 22, 2013

Celebrating their Gifts

Youth celebrated their musical talents on Saturday, August 17 through a campus-wide concert at the Harrell Memorial Chapel. Through the Performing Arts Club, taught by spiritual development minister Ahmad Washington, youth learned how to write and produce their own music this summer. Washington coached the class by teaching them how to manage their vocal chords, gave them songs to sing within their range and helped them work through the anxiety of being on-stage.

All the students involved in the summer club signed up voluntarily and had an interest in performing, recording or producing music. Their dedication to the club was apparent – many students carved out time to practice every day.

 Each youth who performed sang a song about their lives. Not only was the process of the club and performances a healing experience for many of the students, but it also affected those in the audience too. A parent of one of our MCH youth had the following to say about her experience.

“These kids touched my heart in a way that I cannot explain,” she said. “By the time this concert was over, I wanted to hug every kid I saw.”

 The youth who performed were not the only people sharing their talents. The Performing Arts Club also provided opportunities to learn behind-the-scenes operations, and students worked to organize and prepare the chapel for the concert.

The title of this concert was Celebrating Gifts. Ron Britton, spiritual development minister, had a few words about sharing gifts after the concert.

“Each one of us has a talent that God wants us to share,” Britton said. “When we share our gifts with others, we see God at work and we continue to grow.”

Tuesday, August 13, 2013

MCH youth learn life skills in Jiu Jitsu

The Waco Academy of Martial Arts Brazilian Jiu Jitsu (Waco BJJ) taught several MCH youth self defense as well as important life lessons. Instructors Mr. Boroff and Mr. Tucker provided free classes to seven Boys Ranch youth this summer during weekly two-hour sessions.

This partnership came about through Nicole Ehler, program director at the Boys Ranch, whose family participates in the program at Waco BJJ. She said the instructors who work with her son have always exceeded her expectations.

“I feel blessed to be a part of their program and I really wanted the experience for our youth,” Ehler said. “The Ranch boys love things like this and my goal is and always will be to expose them to new and exciting things to promote their growth as young men. At Waco BJJ they teach Brazilian Jiu Jitsu but also life skills and lessons that are important stepping stones for our youth’s future.”

During class, youth learned life skills such as work ethic, respecting authority, the value in following rules, passion and dedication, and to never give up. The instructors also taught them to take pride in doing the right thing for yourself and those around you.

“We learned to respect others,” said James C., a Boys Ranch resident. “You need to show respect and build trusting relationships in a positive way to get ahead.”

Participants said they also learned to control their emotions and keep a level head through working with the instructors and each other. During classes, they practiced techniques and had the opportunity to spar with peers as well as the instructors. All the youth had a positive experience in the classes and were very impressed with their instructors.

“You learn how to defend yourself against people bigger than you,” said Boys Ranch resident Bernardo. “I really liked the instructors because they were nice and treated us really well.”

Cameron, another Boys Ranch resident, added, “We learned a lot about controlling your body, self defense and working yourself out of tight situations. Class was a lot of fun and the instructors were GREAT!” 

Monday, August 12, 2013

Save the Date! North Texas Giving Day is September 19

For the second year in a row, Methodist Children’s Home will participate in North Texas Giving Day on September 19. This annual fundraising event raised over $39,000 in a single day for our ministry last year.

North Texas Giving Day is an online fundraising event hosted by Communities Foundation of Texas. Exemplary nonprofit organizations such as MCH are approved to participate in the event and qualify to receive bonus funds for each donation made to their organization that day. From 7 a.m. to midnight on September 19, all donations made to MCH of at least $25 will be multiplied if donated through, an online resource connecting donors to nonprofits. MCH will also be eligible for additional bonus prizes by participating.

“North Texas Giving Day is an exciting way to invite current and first-time donors from all over the U.S. to support those we serve at MCH,” said Lyle Mason, director of benefactor relations at MCH. “The fact that a percentage of every gift is multiplied should encourage many to participate. I hope everyone spreads the word and we surpass last year’s total.”

All money raised for MCH during North Texas Giving Day will go directly to meet childcare needs, not administrative costs. So, save the date and participate!  If you have any questions regarding North Texas Giving Day, don’t hesitate to contact Lyle Mason at 254-315-5193.