Wee Kirk Outreach
A substantial percentage of our gifts and offerings go to our Outreach Program, focusing on serving the neediest children and families in Avery County. Our “Neediest Kids” Outreach Program continues to serve an urgent and growing need in Avery County, still one of the poorest counties in North Carolina. The original focus of the program was through the public school system but now has been expanded to other organizations that enables us to assist young people who, through no fault of their own, need assistance in reaching for their full potential. We continue to be impressed with the way in which all of our partners determine the needs, handle the expenditures and report back to us all on a confidential and as-needed basis. Individual needs are always sudden and unexpected, and working arrangements with these groups and agencies enable the Wee Kirk to work behind the scenes so we can respond quickly.
You can be certain that your financial gifts to the Wee Kirk “Neediest Kids” Outreach Program are being put to very good use, efficiently, and for deserving cases where other assistance options simply are not available or cannot be addressed in a timely manner.
We thank all of our members for their continued generous support of Wee Kirk and its mission in Avery County.
Wee Kirk Outreach Partners
Avery County Schools The school system provides quick response to needs of students. Including:
Clothing, particularly in the winter months. As fast as kids grow, many parents cannot afford new jackets and shoes each new school year.
Assist in medical expenses, vision care, dental care, personal hygiene and asthma and diabetic supplies and some Doctor’s visits. Also helps provide general medical supplies in each school.
Tutoring in Math and English is available to all students.
Transportation needs as well as help during the winter months with heating bills.
Avery County Schools provide a hands on relationship with all children in the county. They maintain the “Scottie Bus” (Supporting Children’s Opportunity Through Technology Innovation Education). A mobile Pre-k classroom with state endorsed Pre-K literacy classroom programs is offered to young children 3 and 4 years that are not enrolled in a Pre-K program. The Scottie Bus is a converted school bus designed to go where these pre K kids are on a weekly predetermined schedule.
Volunteer Avery County Volunteer Avery principal effort is to match volunteers with opportunities to help in the community. Individuals and groups are linked to service projects that interest them and meets the needs in the area.
Our Outreach funds provide VAC the resources to aid families that do not qualify or have exhausted all other public assistance. Fuel bills, transportation, medical needs and clothing are just some of the emergency needs they provide. Local DSS personal have describes VAC as a “safety net” in Avery County. They service approximately 1,100 families with formula, diapers and food.
Williams YMCA Our Outreach Support to the YMCA covers the SPLASH program which teaches all Kindergarten and 2nd graders, including home schooled, to swim. This program does not require YMCA membership. Kindergarten kids are taught not to panic and be able to blow bubbles and float on their back. Sounds easy but not so for 4-5 year olds. Second graders are taught basic water safety and principals of swim strokes and must pass a swim test, 25 yards, and tread water for 1 minute. Also 2nd graders are taught to put on a life jacket and using a paddle to propel an inflatable boat down and back in the pool.
WOW 4H. Wonderful Opportunities Waiting is a summer camp program run by the County 4H. It runs from the time school is out until school returns in August with approximately 75 kids participating. Transportation and 2 meals a day are provided. They charge a small fee but approximately 67% receive full or partial support. Roughly 98% of the kids served are from working families that are dependent on summer care. They are provide with daily educational programs and ½ day at the Avery County Pool.
Blue Ridge Partnership for Children Our Outreach support for Blue Ridge Partnership allows them to participate in the Imagination Library. Started by The Dolly Parton Foundation the Imagination Library supplies a book a month to all kids registered from birth thru their 5th birthday. The program bridges the gap for families desiring to provide early literacy experiences for their preschool children and cannot afford to purchase books. Currently Blue Ridge has over 300 kids in the program and 389 who have aged out and are most certainly better prepared for kindergarten.
Young Life Young Life is a Christian ministry operating in the Boone Avery for middle and high school kids operated through “club” at each school. Every Young Life club is a combination of fun, humor, and time for kids to hear about God in terms they can understand. Young Life staff are on site for every club meeting which are held weekly throughout the school year. Some of Wee Kirk’s Outreach support goes to provide scholarships help for Avery County kids to their summer camp program. They currently own two camps, Windy Gap, approximately 2,000 acres in Weaverville and Carolina Point, approximately 800 acres in Brevard.
Feeding Avery Families Feeding Avery Families is dedicated to providing supplemental and nutritional assistance to hungry people in need in Avery County. It is a Christian based organization that is dedicated to Jesus teachings “Feed My Sheep”. Feeding Avery is currently providing food for 1,300 people per month.
Additionally, Feeding Avery has adopted the back pack program for the Avery County Schools. Twice weekly, back packs are provided to those children in the school system who are designated as potentially “food deficient”.
Mayland Community College Wee Kirk awards 4 scholarships annually to needy Avery County High School graduates who otherwise may never have the opportunity to attend college. The awards are determined by collaboration between the guidance counselor at the High School and the Admissions department at Mayland.