For the past nine years the Reading Lockland Presbyterian Church and New Direction Youth Academy has been working on behalf of the underserved, the underfed youth of the Village of Lockland and surrounding communities. The mission of this program is to provide a free breakfast and lunch, plus education enrichment, physical fitness and field trips to the children of the Lockland, Reading and Wyoming School Districts and surrounding communities six hours a day for up to 10 weeks of their summer vacation. Intentionally inclusive and diverse, the program is highly structured, providing age appropriate classes in reading, writing and character education, math, art, nutrition, financial literacy, and physical fitness for children ages three through 18.
When the Reading Lockland Presbyterian Church answered the call to help disadvantaged youth in 2009, they never dreamed of the impact a simple nutritional, activity-oriented program could have! Successful is a relative term because there are still so many kids in need. In 2018, to ensure the program’s survival for a ninth summer, the founder of New Direction Youth Academy (a 501c3 Corporation) stepped in to continue operations at the Reading Lockland Presbyterian Church.
Created in the image of God (Genesis 1:26-28), but many trapped by the limitations of their urban environment, the children in the program are challenged and encouraged to discover their unique gifts in a creative learning atmosphere and to develop a vision of a better life, a life of contribution and excellence. There is a deep hunger in urban areas—hunger for food, hunger for love and acceptance, and hunger to know our loving God. This program touches and addresses all these hungers. After nine wonderful summers at Reading Lockland Presbyterian Church, this will be the first summer that The Presbyterian Church of Wyoming will be engaged in this mission and in partnership with both Whole Again and New Direction Youth Academy, Inc. However, we need your help. There remains shortage of a portion of the funds necessary to pay the teachers’ salaries.
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