By Brandon Martin
Students at the Victory Baptist Academy (VBA) collected items for and assembled care packages to support the homeless community throughout November.
This mission, in conjunction with the Martinsville-Henry County Warming Center, was the school’s first official service project since moving into their new location last year.
Amy Owen, a middle and high school educator at VBA, explained that the first year of operation focused on the new teachers and leadership fostering relationships with the students. Now, she says, they are starting to shift focus.
“Now, we, as a strong, family unit, are more prepared and looking forward to serving within our community and teaching our students how to be servants,” Owen said. “We believe it is important to teach our students how to have a servant’s heart and how to look to those around us and see how we can best offer our God-given talents and characteristics to help one another.”
VBA has 52 students enrolled, ranging from preschool all the way to 12th grade. The school uses teacher-generated materials and from the Abeka Academy program. The Abeka Academy program’s mission is to support and equip students, teachers and parents by providing academic resources based upon biblical values.
“The goal of Victory Baptist Academy is to assist in the educating and training of Christian students to wholeheartedly seek the Lord, serve him, and teach others about him,” Owen explained. “The program at Victory Baptist Academy is designed based on Biblical standards which help our students to develop Godly character and responsibility. We desire to see, and work to help our students mature spiritually, academically, physically, and socially. We strive for excellence in all that we may do in order to glorify God.”
VBA chose to partner with the Martinsville-Henry County Warming Center this year. The center, which recently announced its reopening this year, provides a warm and dry place to shield the homeless from the extreme winter temperatures and inclement weather. Owen said that the warming center was a great opportunity to serve and that she’s glad that her students were able to experience it for themselves.
“I have been volunteering with the winter warming center for the last few years and this is a cause in the community that I support wholeheartedly,” she said. “This effort reaches those within our community that need help the most. I have been tremendously blessed to get to know some of the guests that stay at the warming center whenever the doors are open, and they are all remarkable people with unique stories. The desire to serve there was one of the best decisions I’ve ever made, as I have grown from it. I wanted our students to have a part in assisting the warming center to start with some of the basic needs met for the guests.”
According to Owen, the service project was a success and VBA is pleased with the support of the community.
“There are truly not enough words to describe how proud we were at the outpouring of support from our students and their families for this service project,” she said. “We had anticipated making at least 25 care packages for the guests of the warming center, but we were able to exceed that tremendously, and have lots of other essentials for the guests covered as well. Our students and their families exceeded our goals for items for care packages, as well as brought in Bibles, towels, washcloths, men’s socks, hats, and snacks. We are blessed to say that Victory Baptist Academy has some of the best students and families. Students here are truly something special.”