Last week our Program Assistant, Leah Engelhart, transitioned from being a staff member back to being a volunteer. She spent the last two years as an employee of DinoMights, and now she is beginning the next phase of her career as a Student Teacher. We are so very thankful for her great work and her friendship to the kids, volunteers, and staff. We are also thankful that, while she won’t be working for DinoMights, she will still be close by. Leah has volunteered to continue loving DinoMights kids by serving as this year’s Girls Team Coach!
To honor Leah as she moves on, I decided to include in this month’s letter an excerpt from her personal blog http://celebratingthekingdom.blogspot.com. This entry really shows Leah’s heart for our kids and that she has truly embraced DinoMights’ philosophy of long term relationships.
Last week the DinoMights had their annual Academic Power Camp.
We had 18 new students attend the camp. Often when we recruit kids who are going into 2nd grade, if their siblings are in elementary school we invite them to join as well. One of the new kids had an older 4th grade sister who decided to join DinoMights. At Power Camp, the other 4th grade girls were not being very inclusive during game time. They all attend the same school, and this new girl does not.
I have hope for these 4th grade girls . . .
I began tutoring/mentoring Lacy when she was in 4th grade. She is now going into 7th grade. This past week at camp she asked this new 4th grade girl to play a game with her. I observed this interaction and welled up with emotion. Throughout the week she continually included this girl. Lacy has 3 younger siblings looking up to her, but also many other eyes watching and admiring her actions. She is such a beautiful girl and I am continually grateful to have her in my life.
I love that Leah points out how thankful she is to observe growth in Lacy, and at the same time she expects growth in today’s 4th graders. Leah gets it. She made a choice to love Lacy, and now she is watching Lacy love others. Not that Leah is the sole reason that Lacy made friends with a new student, it’s that love is something that you give away. And when you see someone that you love giving it away you can’t help but feel that your mission is being accomplished!