On May 15, Pastor Chad invited three volunteers from each of our services to a "Beat the Odds Challenge." These participants were given $100 and asked to:
- Recognize that the money belongs to God
- Use it to build God's Kingdom
- Involve other people
- Report back on June 12th about how they invested the money.
Ten year-old Jillian Zollar was one of those volunteers, and she took the challenge seriously. She knew it was a big responsibility and she wanted to do well. She started by making a list of charities that she would like to help and researched them on the Internet. Ultimately she decided on Royal Family Kids because of our church's involvement and because she felt the need to help these kids.
Next Jillian sent an email to the Ventura City Council to obtain permission to do a bake sale at a local park. Jillian stated that she had been given a challenge by her pastor at church. She said, "The service was about how nothing is really ours and that it is all given to us by our Creator. Also, it is not about how much money you have, it is about giving to others...I want to raise money for Royal Family Kids Camp by having a bake sale...My friends and I want to do this project to help these unfortunate, abused children. We come from very blessed families, and these children don't. They have had a hard childhood, and this charity gives these children an opportunity to have a fun-filled week where they are surrounded by love and spiritual nourishment. It also gives their foster parents a chance to relax." She referred the Council to RFK's website in case they wanted more information.
Deputy Mayor, Neal Andrews, replied to Jillian's email and told her that she wouldn't be able to have a bake sale on city property, but that he would be sending a charitable contribution to Royal Family Kids because he was so proud of her and her belief in the charity.
Jillian made several lists of what she needed and involved family and friends who helped her bake, make signs and set up a bake/candy sale in her neighborhood. She sold more of these baked goods and candy on Sunday morning between services. Jillian's family also had a yard sale, and she donated money brought in for her items to RFK.
Jillian has turned the $100 she was entrusted with into $500*. Well done, Jillian!
*Editor's Note: The amount had been $475 until Jillian gave her report to the congregation on June 12. Following the 9:30 service a woman handed Jillian $25 more!