Sponsored by the Virginia Baptist Mission Board, Impact Virginia is a one-week mission opportunity for youth in grades 7-12 that focuses on home repair for low-income families and spiritual growth for teens and the people they serve. While the youth participating in southwest Virginia spent the early mornings and evenings each day in devotion and worship at Bluefield College, they spent the bulk of their daily time in the community, renovating homes in Tazewell County.
The youth worked from 8 a.m. to 4 p.m. each day, Monday through Friday, stopping only for lunch, provided by local churches who joined the cause. They invested hundreds of hours of labor into southwest Virginia, combined with thousands of dollars in materials, most of which was provided to Bluefield College an the Impact teams by local contractors, home improvement centers, and other donors.
“It is remarkable to think about the impact we’ve been able to have in this community over the years,” said BC’s David Taylor, vice president for student services, about the college’s participation in Impact Virginia since 2009. “We have made dwellings warmer, safer and dryer for needy homeowners. We couldn’t make this kind of difference in people’s lives without these youth and without the support of the Virginia Baptist Mission Board, our local churches and others who contributed to the cause.”
Using Bluefield College as mission central, the Impact teams ate breakfast and dinner on campus and participated in daily devotions and worship prior to and at the end of each service day. Part of the institutional mission at Bluefield College is to be “in service to God and the community,” Taylor said. Collaborating with the Virginia Baptist Mission Board to bring Impact Virginia to Bluefield is just one way the school can fulfill that mission.
“At Bluefield, we believe passionately in service above self and strive hard to prepare compassionate students to impact their world,” said Taylor. “Impact Virginia is an opportunity to not only serve others, but also to grow in Christian faith.”
In addition to Impact Virginia, the college hosted other mission and ministry projects and groups on campus this summer to restore homes, support local church ministries and share the love of the Christian faith in Greater Bluefield, including the Skyland Bible Conference and Kilpatrick Baptist Association.
A GROUP OF VIRGINIA BAPTIST YOUTH COMPLETE RENOVATIONS TO A LOCAL HOME AS PART OF IMPACT VIRGINIA, HOSTED BY BLUEFIELD COLLEGE AND SPONSORED BY THE VIRGINIA BAPTIST MISSION BOARD.