Home Church community Eastern Oaks Church Responds to Community Needs Through Tutoring

Eastern Oaks Church Responds to Community Needs Through Tutoring

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Nearly ten years ago, Eastern Oaks Church in Montgomery decided to try something new for the summer.

“We took all summer Wednesday nights and went door to door and said, ‘How can we pray for you, and what can our church do to serve the community,’ remembers Pastor Daniel Gillenwater.

They got a recurring answer to the second question – “Our children need help in school.”

So they took that and ran with it, Gillenwater said.

The church began hosting a breakfast every first and third Saturday mornings from 9 to 11 a.m., helping students with homework or tutoring if needed.

“We had teachers in our congregation and college graduates who weren’t shy about helping out and someone who volunteered to make breakfast,” Gillenwater said. “Depending on the crowd, sometimes it’s one on one, sometimes it’s one tutor for four or five kids.”

All ages concerned

The focus is on K-12, but “we’ve had a few middle schoolers who needed math help, and we have a few math pros in the church,” Gillenwater said.

They also helped a few preschoolers with the alphabet and some non-English speaking families to learn the language, he added.

“We didn’t send anyone away if they showed up asking for help. We will give all the help we can give.

One of Gillenwater’s favorite aspects of the ministry is seeing how people across the church have volunteered.

“We had several of our youngsters, fifth and sixth graders … who came to help tutor kids younger than them,” he said. “You don’t need to have a teaching degree or a college degree to help.”

The ministry fits squarely into the mission of the church, Gillenwater noted.

“We are big proponents of needs-based outreach. We believe very strongly in trying to meet the needs so that we can share the gospel with them.