About Connect Fort Worth
How it all started
Since I was a kid I have know it was my call to help those in need. As I grew up and went to school and moved from city to city I started to believe that one of the root causes of problems in our world is that we are disconnected from one another. When we are disconnected from our neighbors and community it is easier to ignore, stereotype, and marginalize people we see as different from us. I believe that when we become more connected to those around us and are able to see each other as the humans that we are first instead of as “the homeless” or “the poor” we can solve many of the humanitarian problems of our community. There are more than enough resources in the world for all of us to live healthy lives, but our disconnection keeps us from sharing it with people who need it the most.
As a youth minister in Nashville, Kansas City, and Raleigh planning mission trips was a challenge as I discovered it difficult to find mission trips sites that truly connected our youth with the community they were serving and empowered them to take what they learned back home. I am not personally connected with service organizations in different cities and organizations that pre-planned service mission trips that fit the Disciples theology and practice were few and far between. I wanted to find an organization that could connect me and my youth with service projects that helped their community in ways that were relational, sustainable, and dignity-giving.
I decided the best solution to my problem was to start my own organization that did exactly that. With the support and encouragement of my childhood church, Ridglea Christian Church in Fort Worth, Texas, I started Connect Fort Worth and we hosted our first trip in 2015.
My goal is to empower groups of all ages to take what they learn here in Fort Worth back home to serve and connect with people in their home communities. On each trip participants serve with several different organizations that work in the Fort Worth area to combat issues like homelessness, hunger and urban poverty; as well as aid our refugee, immigrant, and marginalized neighbors. By working with many organizations over the week not only do participants better understand their own skills and gifts when it comes to serving with others, but they also get to work along side and meet people from all different backgrounds, with all different stories, and make those vital connections our world is missing. The places we work with are supported year round by the wonderful members of Ridglea Christian Church, and work to not just fix people’s immediate needs, but also work to fix the long term needs of the community.