I am DayBreak: Meet Gary and Sterling!

Gary and Sterling are another one of our dynamic duos! Gary has been a volunteer for 4 years and we were excited to have Sterling join the DayBreak family almost 3 years ago, after they met and were married. Gary and Sterling are Reading Partners and have been both consistent and committed volunteers. We are thankful for Sterling’s kind and calm demeanor. She is also very gracious, and we have been encouraged by her dealings with DayBreak kids. Gary’s “chill” personality allows him to work well with our kids, not allowing much to phase him. We as staff are thankful for his down-to-earth personality and for the ways that he has been a good fit to the boys he’s been paired with for Reading Partners.

Here is what Gary and Sterling had to say about being volunteers:

Why did you choose to volunteer at DayBreak?

G: I initially heard about Daybreak through Frontline and McLean Bible Church. Then in 2010, my work schedule gave me a lot of free time in the afternoon, a friend of mine had decided to start tutoring, and I decided to join her. I’ve been doing it since then, except for a year when my work schedule didn’t quite allow me to.

S: I volunteered at the Turkey Outreach event with Gary and another friend in 2010. As I learned more about the work and mission of Daybreak, I was eager to get involved and started as a tutor in 2011.

What do you love about being a part of the dayBreak family?

G: The kids are what make it all worthwhile. Just having the chance to hang out with them a little bit and try to be a positive influence on them is such a rewarding experience. And it’s really cool to be part of something bigger, in terms of how Daybreak is influencing the community of Lincoln Heights on the whole.

S: It’s great to be involved with the Daybreak family and to get to know the kids. I’m thankful to be a part of the kids’ lives, even for a small window of time each week.

Why would you encourage someone to volunteer at DayBreak?

G: It’s just a great way to be part of something bigger than yourself, and to live out your faith in a practical way. Whether it’s reading a book or playing a game, it’s a small sacrifice of your time that can have a big impact — hopefully and prayerfully — for the better on someone else.

S: If you’re looking for a way to get plugged in and serve, there’s no better place than Daybreak. It’s a wonderful opportunity to serve a group of awesome kids, and you’re guaranteed to have a fun, memorable time in the process.

Gary and Sterling, we are so thankful to call you “DayBreak Family”! Your service has been a blessing to us, and so today, we celebrate you! Thank you for being committed to helping us fulfill our mission.

I am DayBreak: Meet Matt!

Matt is currently a Mentor, but first became a part of the DayBreak family in 2009 when he signed up to help with the After School Program and be a Reading Partner to Anthony. We as staff are always encouraged when we think about how Matt and Anthony’s relationship has grown. Anthony, being younger at the time, would often pout and cry when it came to reading. However, Matt continued to faithfully show up each week, was gentle yet firm and continually encouraged Anthony. We are thankful for Matt’s kind personality, his commitment to investing in Anthony’s life and the ways that he is willing to go the extra mile.

Hear what he had to say about being involved at DayBreak:

Why did you choose to volunteer at DayBreak?

I was originally looking for a way to serve.

What do you love about being a part of the dayBreak family?

What I love most is the relationships.  The kids can be so fun, and over time I’ve built a relationship with Anthony where I think I have made a positive difference in his life.

Why would you encourage someone to volunteer at DayBreak?

I would encourage someone to try volunteering at Daybreak. It’s a great way to serve and you can make a difference in somebody’s life.

Matt, we are thankful for you and that you are a part of the DayBreak family! Thank you for your role in helping us nurture children and strengthen families.

I am DayBreak: Meet Ariel and Theo!

We are fortunate to have a number of dynamic duos at DayBreak. Ariel and Theo are one of them. They are both teachers in area public schools and are engaged to be married this summer! Ariel has been a part of the DayBreak family since 2009, which is when she facilitated a middle school girls Bible study and hang out time. She took a break to focus on getting her Master’s degree and we were glad to welcome her back in the fall of 2013 as a Reading Partner. Theo joined Ariel in the fall of 2013, as they were looking for a way to serve together.

We love and are thankful for Ariel’s kind yet bold personality, the way that she intentionally speaks to the kids and her willingness to be flexible. Theo’s calm and warm personality has allowed him to connect well with the child he reads with each week, and he too has been flexible, willing to jump in and serve in other areas.

Here’s what they had to say about being a volunteer:

Why did you choose to volunteer at DayBreak?

A: I choose to volunteer at Daybreak because I have a heart for service and passion for youth. As a teacher in a public school setting, I am not always able to explicitly share the gospel with my students. Daybreak allows me to serve children and also share Christ with them!

T: I chose to be a  Daybreak volunteer because I teach at a school nearby and I wanted to give back to the community.

What do you love about being a part of the dayBreak family?

A: I love that Daybreak allows you to build relationship with the children, their families and the community. Daybreak allows us to see The Lord changing an entire community one relationship at a time.

T: I love the connection that you can grow with the child. I feel like I am more than just a Reading Partner! It is a great way gateway into mentorship.

Why would you encourage someone to volunteer at DayBreak?

A: I would encourage someone to be apart of Daybreak because you really become apart of the community in which you serve. It’s hard not to fall in love with the kids & being with them helps you grow in ways you could never imagine.

T: I would encourage someone to get involved with Daybreak because it is a fun way to serve others and Christ.

Ariel and Theo, we celebrate you today! Thank you for your servants’ hearts and for working alongside of us!