Little Flowers Preschool

Baltimore Camp Scholarship Fund

Help  a child in W. Baltimore by contributing to this fund which will be used for scholarships for children to attend summer camps at Ames and John Wesley UMCs provided by the Baltimore Washington Retreat and Camping Ministries and the Summer Enrichment Program at Little Flowers School in the Sandtown neighborhood of Baltimore (2 months)!   Help a kid living in poverty have a safe super-charged summer, prevent brain drain, and go on educational and fun field trips.  Make your check payable to EUMC and write on the memo line: Baltimore Camp Scholarship Fund.   Emmanuel UMC will match dollar for dollar up to $3000 gifts to this fund with Emmanuel Outreach Funds.  Emmanuel UMC tithes from all bequests the church receives, we put 10% of the money we get from bequests into an Outreach Fund that is used to provide outreach ministries like: Quality of Life retreats for persons living with HIV/AIDS, Nicaraguan Scholarship Fund which helps impoverished Nicaraguans attend college, Several Scholarships for College for active Emmanuel young adults, youth mission teams, Little Flowers School, and more.

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Emmanuel UMC has been in partnership with Little Flowers Early Childhood & Development Center for over a year and half. This partnership means that we walk with them on their journey to provide rich soil for 220 “little flowers” in Sandtown to grow. Our relationship has grown slowly and fruitfully into a full church effort, with over 68 folks who have participated in providing books, balls, art supplies, making quilts and participating in Little Flowers’  field trip to Emmanuel Preschool. So far, 27 folks from Emmanuel,  12 to 87 years of age,  have spent time at Little Flowers  with the infants, the preschool-age children, the After School Program, the Summer Enrichment program, and the Saturday tutoring. It has blossomed into a full church outreach partnership that benefits our church in that we are forming relationships with our neighbors in one of the poorest, most segregated areas of Baltimore and building bridges across some deep divides in our society.

This fall, Emmanuel Outreach has assisted Little Flowers by providing funds for an audit, which will allow Crystal Flowers, the director, to apply for larger grants. This audit should open the door for Little Flowers to build a more stable financial base as a nonprofit which is currently dependent on the Baltimore City voucher system as their primary funding stream. Crystal Flowers would like to become a charter school, but the lease with the Catholic church for their building prohibits it. The purpose of the audit is to provide a base for building capacity to advance Little Flowers mission into the future. Ms. Flowers is working on a business plan that will take her to next model of financial sustainability and would appreciate any volunteers who would work with her.

In September 2016,  Little Flowers initiated a partnership with Ames Memorial UMC, around the corner from Little Flowers, as these 2 anchor institutions in Sandtown begin to coordinate their missions.  Ames UMC uses Little Flowers classrooms for its “Career/ College Prep Program” every Tuesday evening; this is hosted by Glen Mar UMC, Ellicott City. Also, Ames is providing space for Little Flowers to use their full kitchen and basement for the Saturday Parent’s Cafe (nutrition/ exercise/ parenting discussions), while their children are at Little Flowers for Math/Literature tutoring,  where Emmanuel volunteers join Baltimore City teachers in tutoring elementary school age children.

img_1356Little Flowers EDC currently has 10 infants, 120 children ages 2-5, and an after school program for 80 children, ages 6 to 14, in two facilities. They have 45 staff members from the community and in the summer, they hire teenagers(24) from the youth summer program. Quite an impact on the Sandtown community! They have a summer program for 80 children 6-14 to keep them engaged in learning and field trips.

The director of Little Flowers, Crystal Hardy Flowers, spoke to Emmanuel in May 2015 and invited us into a relationship with the children there. Our church has collected balls, books, art supplies and made quilts for Little Flowers. Many folks from Emmanuel, 12 to 87 years of age have visited the school children to read books, sing songs, play, or hang out in their library.

On May 10, 2016, forty-five children and ten staff from Little Flowers joined Emmanuel Preschool in activities, took a walk, and ate lunch in the Fellowship Hall. We are grateful for Damita, Donna, and the 15 volunteers and folks who brought food! Also in May, Ed DeLong went up to build raised beds and plant vegetables with the children at Little Flowers and had a wonderful time.

Volunteer for a Weekday Visit to Little Flowers
Visits are scheduled twice a month, on a Tuesday and on a Thursday, from 9:30 to 11am. We leave from Emmanuel at 9am, and return around Noon. Emmanuel folks (3-4) carpool up to Baltimore, a 35 minute drive, and park in a secured lot.

Volunteer for Saturday Tutoring
Little Flowers has a new program to provide tutoring for children in the community ages 5-18 on the 2nd and 4th Saturday of each month from 11am – 2pm and are looking for tutoring volunteers.Volunteers of all ages are needed!  While the children are being tutored at Little Flowers, the parents of the children will meet at Ames Memorial United Methodist Church for a Parent’s Cafe: discussions on education, parenting, healthy eating and exercise.  .

For more information on the preschool visits and tutoring, contact Sue Hill at 301-776-6160 or susanhillgh@gmail.com or sign up below.

Fall 2016 Special Project:

Emmanuel collected and donated art & craft supplies for 2 – 4 year olds to use in class activities and 5-15 year olds for the after-school program. The supplies were taken to Little Flowers on our October 25th visit. Thank you so much for your generosity and  to Ellen McDaniel for coordinating this project. A heartfelt thanks goes to Sue Hill who has been instrumental in our partnership with Little Flowers.

Quilting Project
The Girl Scouts Quilting Day on July 30 to help support the babies at Little Flowers was a big success! We would like to thank Girl Scouts, Alayna Neidermyer, Krista & Erika Goodwin and their moms (Archana & Teresa) for coordinating this project and the many volunteers for their donations of time and/or money. Emmanuel completed 12 quilts and they were given to the Little Flowers nursery babies, stitched with our prayers in October. View photos on our Facebook page.

Thank you note from Little Flowers
Emmanuel’s Outreach Committee donated funds for the Little Flowers Summer 2016 Enrichment program, called GRASP, that provides academic enrichment and field trips for 70 children ages 5-12. This helped with scholarships, staff support, and field trips. It also helped to support field trips for the preschoolers, too, as Little Flowers takes the classroom outdoors.

                                        View Thank You Note & Thank You Video