Heart of MissionAwards are presented at the Wider Church Ministries dinner at each General Synod to people involved in ministries of the Wider Church Ministries' Offices of National Disaster, Volunteer, Refugee & Health and Wholeness Ministries. Recipients are those who have gone "above and beyond" in providing support and participation in these ministries and mission.
We are pleased to recognize your commitment to service, Zayna, through your continued participation in UCC Partners in Service opportunities.
Zayna has exhibited commitment to service through multiple placements through UCC Volunteer Ministries as a Partners in Service volunteer and through her encouragement of the participation of other youth and young adults. She has assisted in the on-going ministries of partner organizations, and through relationships nurtured through this service, has recognized her calling to leadership and ministry in the church. In 2005-6 after completing high school, Zayna served with children at the Evangelical Children's Home in St. Louis, Missouri. Evangelical Children's Home offers a wide variety of care for abused, abandoned, or neglected youth and their families. Evangelical Children's Home provides children with growth experiences that prepare them for effective personal, family, community and career interactions. They provide caring, professional services that empower, educate and nurture children, youth and families to become productive, healthy members of the community. During winter break from college, Zayna contacted the Volunteer Ministries Office and was connected with Washington UCC in Cincinnati, Ohio to assist with tasks needed for the on-going functioning of their inner city ministries with tutoring youth and emergency food services. Zayna's current volunteer placement through UCC Volunteer Ministries is as summer facilitator of mission trip groups with Faithful Advocates Serving Together (F.A.S.T.) in Whitesburg, Kentucky. Zayna's leadership in the F.A.S.T. program helps groups participate in housing rehabilitiation projects in local communities in the Appalachian region and enables reflection on issues of faith and economic justice. Zayna also has gone "above and beyond" in her commitment to service through continued involvement with the ministries of these host sites after her appointed time of service. She has provided leadership in youth events and other settings in which she has shared her experience and encouraged other youth and young adults to participate.