About a year ago, Macey Hughes casually remarked at a meeting of the Valley Center UCC youth group, “We may be small, but we’re mighty.” Was she ever right!
The youth group at VCUCC, in Deepwater, Missouri, wanted to do a fundraiser during the summer of 2018. When sisters Macey and Madison Hughes and siblings Emily and Isaac Neuenschwander learned about the water project of the United Church of Christ in Mozambique through Global Ministries, Emily commented, “That’s just not right that there are people who don’t have clean water.” All four were quickly on board to help with the water projects.
The four youth distributed empty, 16-ounce water bottles to church members with information about the “Clean Water for Mozambique” project. During a presentation at church, the kids talked about the project and asked the members to save their extra change in the bottles. Isaac added, “You can give dollar bills and checks, too!” The youth group created a display for the sanctuary, which included a brightly decorated five-gallon water bottle as the collection point.
Throughout the summer, church members brought their individual water bottles back to church. When there was a Neuenschwander family reunion at the church one weekend, the kids talked about how and why they were raising funds for the UCCM Water Project through Global Ministries. Extended family members from out-of-town even contributed.
“I liked how others were willing to help, and it wasn’t just our youth group doing it,” said Madison.
After the money was collected, the kids sorted it and took it to the bank to be counted. A photo of the money was posted on the VCUCC Facebook page where followers were given a chance to guess how much had been raised. At church on September 23, 2018, the youth group revealed that $830.95 had been raised. Some late contributions increased the total amount collected to $846 for the UCCM Water Project.
As the small-but-mighty VCUCC youth group recently talked about the water project and learned about the two cyclones that struck Mozambique, Macey said, “I think it’s cool that our little group is able to help people so far away.”
You can read more about the United Church of Mozambique Water Projects here.