First Plymouth Congregational Church has an active Outreach Ministry reaching out to the greater community and educating the congregation in ways to help others. The Outreach Ministry receives nominations for the “Share-the-Plate” program from parishioners and the wider community. Each Sunday the worship service hosts a “Moment for Mission” segment where a representative of the recipient organization speaks to the needs and successes of their organization. 80% of the funds collected during the service for “Share-the-Plate” flow through the church to the organization. The remaining 20% is retained in the Outreach Ministry fund for future educational programs and other outreach purposes.
The ROCK Center is a non-profit in Aurora, Colorado who has partnered with local mental health professionals over the past four years to provide resiliency-based out-of-school programming for youth and their families in Aurora Public Schools and beyond.
Our mission statement:
Transforming lives through mindfulness, arts, healing, and a sense of belonging.
Peace Warriors is a two week long Summer program that uses art, spirituality, and community building to deliver the building blocks of resilience (attachment, self-regulation, and competency), which research has shown as a primary means of healing trauma and empowering youth. Peace Warriors Summer Camp serves students entering grades 3rd through 8th grade, as well as 9th through 12th grade if engaging as a Youth Leader.
After School Programing One of our strengths is the partnerships we have with other community partners, and none more then our artists collective community. From hip-hop, capoeira dance, visual artist, engaged theatre, improv, and ROCK band consulting artists, we have created programming that uses the arts and mindfulness to help the youth achieve new ways of seeing themselves and the world.
Breaking Chains Building Bonds Is a 6 month program working with families dealing with incarceration and the prison system. This program uses the power of Art, Storytelling, and transformational healing to help parents and families reunite with each other, build a new story together, and begin the process of healing their traumas and break the chains of imprisonment and harm. We partner with The Storytellers Project and Second Chance Center in holding this program.
The goal of the ROCK center is to build resilience among youth in the highly stressed and impacted neighborhoods of central Aurora. Research in the field of childhood trauma (Blaustein & Kinniburgh, 2010) identifies three areas of key importance in fostering resilience among impacted youth: Attachment (relationships and connections with others), Self-Regulation (identifying, expressing, and modulating emotions) and Competency (being able to say, “I’m good at ____”). Using these three domains, the goals of the ROCK Center follows:
1) Goal 1: Build Connection Skills: Youth who participate in ROCK Center programming will develop positive relationships skills such as helping others and participating in groups activities as measured by pre- and post- programming evaluations.
2) Goal 2: Build Coping Skills: Youth who participate in ROCK Center programming will improve their abilities to identify, express, and modulate their emotions and behaviors such as knowing how to calm down and how to talk to others about their feelings as measured by pre- and post- programming evaluations.
3) Goal 3: Build Competencies: ROCK Center participants will be able to identify at least three things they are good at as measured by programming evaluations.
Some of the Former Recipients:
A Little Help
The Action Center
Audubon Society of Greater Denver
Casa de Paz
Colfax Community Network
Denver Inner City Parish
Denver Police Brotherhood Association
Friends of Man
Friends of The Haven
GraceFull Community Cafe
Loaves and Fishes
Mosquito Range Heritage Initiative
New Foundations: Alternatives to Violence
Reach Out And Read Colorado
Rocky Mountain Immigrant Advocacy Network (RMIAN)
Rocky Mountain Stroke Center
Second Chance Center
The Urban Leadership Foundation of Colorado