Project J.O.Y. (Joyous Offering of Youth)
This youth-driven project is the church's biggest mission. We collect food, clothing, toiletries, and learning bags to distribute to an impoverished community in the Appalachian mountain area of Kentucky.
"If one member suffers, all suffer together...."
I Corinthians 12:26
The date for the 2015 Project Joy trip is Saturday October 31, 2015 with a travel date of Friday, October 30th. This youth-driven project is the church's biggest mission. Founded by the High School youth in 1999, this mission brings essentials to a depressed coal mining community in Kentucky. Please click here to see the 2007 wrap up.
Click here to find out information about the 2015 trip.
Harlan is a small town northeast of Knoxville. In years past, this coal mining area thrived, and the county boasted a population of over 80,000. With the decline of the coal mining industry and the lack of other industry, Harlan residents have fallen on hard times. With the population now down to less than 32,000, almost 40% of the county's children live in poverty. Life is a struggle for many .The first visit to Harlan in December of 1999 was a life-changing experience for our youth group. We felt well prepared for our visit armed with food boxes, winter coats, clothes and Christmas gift boxes for the children. We soon realized, however, how unprepared we were. On that cold December morning, we saw barefooted toddlers, parents with no heat at home begging for blankets for their children, and people asking for basic things that we take so for granted: toilet paper, toothpaste, toothbrushes.
Such a tremendous need in a community only two hours away from Knoxville! God's message was loud and clear - we have to go back to Harlan!
Since then, we have returned to the area with more youth, more adults, more food boxes, more coats and clothing, more toiletries, and more learning bags.
Contact us to see how you or your high schooler can participate in this eye-opening effort.