Emmanuel Church, a five-campus multi-site church with campuses in Johnson and Marion counties, has donated 432 boxes of classroom supplies to teachers of 14 schools across seven school districts. Over three weeks, staff and volunteers distributed boxes to schools in Perry Meridian, Greenwood, Center Grove, Clark Pleasant, Franklin, Edinburgh and IPS donated by the church congregation through an organized collection earlier in the summer. The service project is part of an overall Teacher Appreciation initiative that will culminate in special weekend services on Aug. 10 and 11 at all Emmanuel campuses.
“We wanted to do something that specifically showed love and appreciation for teachers,” said Kerry Carmichael, Outreach Director of Emmanuel Church. “There are so many organizations, like the United Way, that do an outstanding job of providing resources for kids, but we wanted to do something special for our community educators.” After speaking with a few teachers and conducting a Facebook survey, Kerry found that most teachers are paying $800 to $1,000 out of pocket for classroom supplies. Looking for a service opportunity to rally the 5,000-person church behind, Kerry saw a chance to serve a group that is sometimes overlooked.
After a successful campaign in 2018 reaching teachers at 10 schools the goal was set to provide supplies to 14 schools in 2019. Emmanuel’s campus pastors worked closely with principals on coordinating a drop-off schedule at each school before students began arriving for the fall semester. Each box included approximately $25 worth of items including tissues, Sharpies, dry erase markers, disinfectant wipes, Ziploc baggies, pencils and puzzles or games. Each teacher also received an encouraging note from an Emmanuel Church attendee, a $5 gift card to a local coffee shop and a $25 gift card to United Arts and Education. In total, the Emmanuel Church congregation donated $10,800 worth of supplies.
Emmanuel provided supplies to teachers at Union, Needham and Webb Elementary in Franklin; Sugar Grove, North Grove, Walnut Grove, Isom Elementary, Southwest Elementary in Greenwood; James A Garfield School 31, Rosa Parks Kindergarten Academy and Abraham Lincoln Elementary in Indianapolis, as well as Whiteland Elementary, Pleasant Crossing Elementary and Edinburgh Elementary.
Each teacher also received an invite to Emmanuel’s Teacher Appreciation Weekend on Aug. 10 and 11. Services will include a video recap of the classroom box distribution, along with special elements of appreciation for teachers, including a conversation between Lead Pastor Danny Anderson and 2019 Indiana Teacher of the Year Tamara Markey.
“The purpose of having an entire weekend dedicated to teachers is to show them they are loved and known. The work they do not only impacts our children, but it also impacts our communities,” shares Anderson. “I know Tamara Markey will provide inspiration because as a teacher, she understands the importance of stewarding influence while encountering the challenges that teachers face.”
“We know that teachers work incredibly hard,” adds Carmichael. “We hope that our teachers and schools know that we are here to support them, encourage them, and pray for them throughout the year.”
About Emmanuel Church:
Emmanuel Church is a non-denominational, multi-site church – one church in multiple locations – offering live or video-streaming services at four physical locations on the Southside of Indy: Greenwood (opened in 1977), Banta Road (2013), Franklin (2015) and Garfield Park (2019), along with its Online Campus (established in 2017). Averaging more than 5,000 weekend attendees at five campuses, Emmanuel attributes its growth to relevant and authentic teaching and a relentless pursuit of those who are far from God. Lead Pastor Danny Anderson has served Emmanuel Church as lead pastor since 2006. The church partners with many local organizations who are helping to meet the practical and spiritual needs of the Indianapolis community, including the Shepherd Community Center. Each year, Emmanuel sends teams to Nicaragua, Colombia, Haiti and Rwanda, helping with needed projects and sharing the love of Christ. For more information, visit eclife.org.