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23: Interview with Dallas Bonavita the Executive Director of Note in the Pocket

Crossroads Connection / Pastor Andy George
The Truth Network Radio
July 25, 2020 10:00 am

23: Interview with Dallas Bonavita the Executive Director of Note in the Pocket

Crossroads Connection / Pastor Andy George

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Welcome to Crossroads connection is a show all about having conversation surrounding life ministries and culture on is a quick thank you to our friends at the Truth Network for airing this program and thank you for listening today. I am Tyler, I'm joined as always by Jamie and Andy, how are you both doing that anyhow are you yeah love the opportunity once again to be here on a Saturday for the radio and thank you to everybody who are listening right now where every listening from it's been it's been interesting journey that we've all been on and so hopefully this next little bit here will be a great encouragement. Every listening so thank you Tyler for being here as well euros. Think also be in here I am touching early and I appreciate you just not the smooth voice control guy your your your key part of this point are not well well very retro party. Nobody else could say, welcome to Crossroads like you all. Thanks guys, very good peers see if anything your crosses connections about connect and so were connecting to your heart right now. Time really are. I I am touch you listen right now are going is going on here you yes so we are letting Jamie how you been doing it and still still enjoying the summer time the pool has been my thinking, like living in NDU in the fall hits and what the good thing about living here is that most pools are open pretty long for the fall and get some time, but it's been a hot couple weeks here we are in very hot summer mode right now but it's good and you were excited about everything going on at the church and the various thinking we talk about this often and I bring this up because I'm sure that whoever is listening now were all dealing with. What does our life look like in phasing reopening and coming back to some sort of norm and really coming out of this realizing what stuff is change will suffer the same mean on every thing in between. So it's kind of one of those times were your was grateful to be able to we start church backup a few weeks ago. Sunday looks a little different and I know a lot of our our pastor and church friends in the area are all starting to reemerge and so were hoping that that will continue to happen very safely in a very honorable way, but it's in the same time transformation that's for sure. No doubt about it. Yeah will speaking of transformation.

We as a church and walking through reading the Bible from Genesis to Revelation out. We become content the year of transformation 2020 and your sermons have been following along each week with where we are reading the Bible so recently preached a sermon and the same can you let us know what that's all about. I've enjoyed we've been saying is always in fact whether you part across or not. I just encourage everybody just take a year and read through the Bible and what you do, of a formal plan or canonical plan or any kind of plan that you are because that word of God is so completely transformational and we've also this on this program almost every week for last four months especially, and that is how important it's been to be grounded in Scripture. When the rest of the world is in chaos that we got this anchor in Scripture and we got this anchor and who Christ is.

That's found in Scripture. So for me, and I think for a lot of people in our church. It really has been a very healthy journey in transformation based in Scripture. I'll know what I would do or feel if I wasn't consuming Scripture like we are. You know I mean seriously…, Like if that lifeline of encouragement, support, and I want to put a little plug if you're listening.

And maybe you're into the Bible. Or maybe you read the bow before maybe just came across this channel you just listen to us right now.

I would highly, highly recommend that you stop whatever you're doing and read the book of Proverbs in the book of Ecclesiastes. Those two books back to back are such a powerful powerful powerful summary of wisdom and practicality. Things that you can implement and so is Jamie's you are saying we been reading through the Bible and then we are preaching out of what we read that week so not that long ago. We are in the book of Proverbs and as I was rereading through it, praying about what to speak on what to preach on it's like every chapter and every verse of Mike Weller preach on that loan for Senate and we kind of going through it and it was actually very difficult. Proverbs has been the most difficult book to preach out of because it has so much to talk about so much wisdom found in that book and Ecclesiastes is very similar Ecclesiastes a little easier because many times it's just you know everything is vain and vanity and and everything is meaningless but but even there. There are so many good Proverbs and practicality found within their site was so back to the summer we preach recently that I wanted to just talk about a little bit you both can feel free to dig up and as well in this conversation and hopefully it wasn't.

It would encourage people listening now and there was a title. I gave it was practical Proverbs which is a pretty obvious title. The reason I wanted to call it practical.

Proverbs is just to reinforce the fact that the book of Proverbs is very practical. That is not just written by Solomon thousands of years ago that sits on a dusty shelf.

Those Proverbs are so there's 900 Ashley Proverbs in that book, and those Proverbs are so incredibly practical for today and I preached out of Proverbs chapter 6.

Specifically, verses 16 to 19, and I preached on that because that passage caught my attention likes only people who read that passage because it starts off with. There are six things that God hates and there are seven that are an abomination to him and Alan about both of you are people listen right now but if God says that he hates something and that something is an abomination to him. I kinda want to know what those are the I want to make sure I'm not doing right now citizen Tyler. There are six things I actually hate what you go like hey would you might like to know those things are like some I will say was I hate if you cannot do one thing, just don't do this one thing awaiting all Taylor like wait, no, I got a note that is what Jamie would've gotten said, but there are seven that is an abomination. Wouldn't you think, hey let me get a piece of paper and write down how to want to do those things you the opposite and pointing what you just said there is when I preach this message.

I didn't want to just preach the message and say hey don't do these seven things. So what should I just get so I should be prideful than what should I do if I should live and what should I do if I should let my heart run to evil. What should I do right. If I shouldn't divisive in church or with above believers. What should I do so I wanted to do was pay attention to the other side that you just said okay I know my guy got it] should have pride.

So then what can I do, and fascinate enough is even in these Proverbs, so what I did is I use the rest of the book of Proverbs to reinforce the positive blessings because the Proverbs. What's amazing about them is that it's not just a thing of wisdom to do or not do this actually blessings that are wrapped into when we follow God's plan that there's blessings behind that so I wanted people to understand what we don't do those things.

That's one part of it, but I have to not do that and then come back and do the good. So one of those six things is to to run away from, like, don't run towards evil right which is fine like we come to know I shouldn't run towards evil things. But instead, what should I do I should cling to good things then I should set my heart on evil desires or plans so should I do I should set my heart on the kingdom of God and his plans and then there's a lifestyle that goes with that. But the one thing I want to just encourage here as we wrap up this time Senate. We have special guess I cannot wait to talk to is the seventh one and that ones do not be divisive amongst believers that one right now. Stuck out to me so powerfully because right now there is so much divisiveness that happens amongst churches and Christians that we gotta be careful to make sure you got yourself so it's not just about being divisive or or speak in bad things. It's about what the Hano I have oneness and unity and that's my hope for is. I hope that that churches and Christians.

Listen now have that oneness and unity that we need more about our conversation now fast self this question. Are you running the business or the business running. You might your teams grow. If your teams are driving the business forward. Instead of you. You are sitting on a wealth of untapped opportunity. It takes courage to learn how to create a culture where your people are truly empowered on their seats, my name Cheryl Scanlon business and executive coach working together will go straight to your court challenges to sort through competing demands and realigned to your highest priorities for measurable results visiting three at sea number three they were back from the break with our very special guest Dallas Mountain View who is the executive director from note in the pocket, Dallas so excited to talk to you.

Welcome to the program so grateful that you make time for us today and glad you're here. Thanks for having me absolutely so note in a pocket. What I know of it and I know a little bit about it.

I am so in love with this ministry and what's happening and I am so excited for people listening right now on this program to hear from you about knowing the pocket before you jump into that. Just give a quick bio of who Dallas is and how you actually ended up as Executive Director of note in the pocket and read about this talk and and are in our church bulletin they were doing a collection through the church and the school foreclosed for students in need. I can help. One of the first things I learned was that there were 48,801 students at the time identified in wake County is living in poverty while immediately I started crying just couldn't wrap my head around that number. So I started to help so I found it through my church, and very important to me to do to help take care of children in my family have lived in Raleigh or over 20 years invested in the school system and is just a natural fit for me. I just started out as a volunteer and then worked my way up. That's all that's amazing. So say that number again. That's a huge number 2012 number was 48,881 students identified as living in crisis and that number came from the free and reduced lunch number right so Toby what what is known, the pocket first of all, and what's the vision of ministry.

Sure the pocket was created because their kindergarten teacher realized that her students.

The majority and then who are living in poverty were coming to school not dressed for the weather close were threadbare. They didn't have what they needed to feel confident and comfortable. It really stems from that. It started out with just codes and quickly learn that children need everything people would be really heartbroken to know how many children go to school without underwear okay yeah children need to be comfortable and you may not know that other kids don't know they're not wearing underwear yeah and what does their self value and their ability to concentrate in school. It's devastating. So we started out helping students has grown into helping the whole family is was learned that if you can support the whole family. It helps that student better so went from codes to close for the student to everyone in the home and in 2012 we really started to get organized.

It started out as a family ministry and organizing our 501(c)(3) got our game plan together served a thousand people back here and decided we were serving extra 500 extra 500 people every year. Here is 2020, and her goal for this year is to serve 5000 well, that's wonderful how maybe serve so far. I will in 2019, we served 4578 individuals mostly mostly children at such an amazing thing. I don't think people really realize how important it is for kids to feel good just about what they're wearing and versus other kids in the area and so Eureka spoke to a book you just drill down a little bit more on why that's so important for kids and families to have access to know the pocket absolutely well you think we know as adults when we get out and we on close that we feel good and we go out to the world and we feel grading we do better than that) I spent dressed for success feeling that helps us be successful when we put that together that our children need the same thing kids can be mean sometimes they are mean just to put the things are not looking down.

Let's have a look at somebody else that a lot of the students that we take care of our just trying to live under the radar. They don't want anybody to know to stand because they don't want to draw attention to that closed off their shoes and are comfortable that they're not wearing the styles and everyone else is wearing Stanley a great percentage of the children that note, the pocket serves they don't think that their life will ever be better than what it is right now. So what we have found is that when you can give them a mini wardrobe of clothes, it changes their whole self perception and they get this feeling of confidence and I look good and I am smart and I can do this and you don't have to close down for ever have to have that first scaling of how this is what this feels like you can't take that away you feel confident then they want to feel that again that's when they figure out. I do good in school. Maybe this is in my control that's powerful realizations I think many people are listening right now.

I never thought about that and we got closets full of clothes and shoes and dressers and we know that there's poverty. We know that there is need out there but you don't really sometimes think that it's right here in the own backyard and in our own kids schools and you know you just never know that so how does it how does it work, how does kid our family find out about knowing the pocket and walk me through a what's up process like for them to come and actually get closer get shoes house at all work will we work with wake County public school system and a dozen agencies that work with families in the financial crisis.

So we are considered third-party provider don't do direct services just because they need is so great. If we were to have families that came and shot we would be able to help just a fraction of the number that we do and when things families have to do when they go, request services, whether it's with the school social worker with an agency they have to tell their story over and over is trauma all having to relive that ask for help and to tell that story again and again were very intentional that we don't put them through that they're already working with the schools and the agencies we let them prequalify them will get a list of the sizes that everyone in the house needs and then it's very anonymous. We don't have anyone's names grade their age. Avoid male-female and all the sizes we package and we deliver to the school or the agency that request to close down the school social worker will deliver when they do a home visit.

We don't have any children getting on the school bus with a note in the pocket bag because we deliver close with dignity and love. We don't want them to feel like this is charity. I wanted to feel like these are kinda close from a cousin or somebody that cares about me.

So the quality has to be really good.

They don't get to pick the close of what they think.

Take out that they may not have necessarily think for themselves. Really good quality and the shoes are nice everything looks really new, then it's a gift it's not charity.

This is special and that such a unique way of doing the exiting. A lot of people when they first part heard of what you were doing.

They think will people just come and pick out clothes and they leave but I love how you are caring for their emotional health to and you want more trauma and so so a couple to make sure we all heard understand that. So you will work with wake County school and other agencies babies to provide you with just details about clothing and boy girl grades you will package it up give back to them than they deliver it so there's a personal touch. On the other end, but allows you all to do this like these that were dignity.

I think that's of that's an important word.

You know they're not carrying backpacks and got all my close from some agency you know and and here we go, so I'm sure that you've got a bunch of stories and testimonies that you've seen from what you are doing. It's very I know the first time I heard this, it really breaks your heart and you get emotionally first-tier about this because you know as well as I just don't think about you is don't and sick people like you wonderful people like you who did think about that and did see it and are doing something about it. So what is a good story or testimony that just stands out to you that which is even paint the picture even more. For all the listeners right now. This is my current favorite line. We had a mother who was telling us. I wish you could've seen after he had received his close friend in the pocket. He was walking to the bus stop and she said I was always confused because I didn't realize how tall he was because he never's it up straight. He never had a pile that is he was walking to the bus stop and he was standing up tall and she said it just broke my heart.

He was so proud of how he is excited to go to school.

He came home that night and he said he answered a question in class today and I got it right and I like how that felt. And this is akin to never spoken class and teachers will tell us the changes miraculous.

They make friends in class and you meet a friend in class, whose good somebody that you can talk to that you can share homework with.

It helps with their emotional, social, physical, and educational development.

So there's so much more than just being happy to get a new pair shoes about that that such a great visual. I love the visual of a little kid walking such so hunched over typically analyses got that that little pride and dignity's, stepping in as ripple effects of disk leading to other things that are that are happening in his life so how was the way how is covert and everything either changed or identified different needs for you on your minister has even affected you at all what was been the effect on knowing the pocket because of everything going on the last couple months well before coded until they were like a three legged stool. We have to have an equal financial support. We had 10 volunteers who had to have clothing donations coming in all of those things were clicking at the same pace. Everything was growing. Our numbers were great. Last year we had over 2400 volunteers. We had over 200,000 pounds of clothing donated things were rolling Co. that happens, like the rest of the world. Everything came to a grinding halt.

Despite the fact that were essential services. Our ability to deliver close just was greatly reduced in weight. We continue to do that while we could now the doors have been back clothing is coming and everybody's been cleaning out the closet, which is been fantastic.

We have the space that we had was no longer enough, you can only have a certain number of people in the building were used to having 2530 people working nonstop and now we can only have five volunteers processing all these clothing.

This is a social distancing guidelines though. Happily, Crossroads has allowed us to use space that was not being used temporarily so that we can expand our volunteer social distancing band 21 tables in this great weather so everybody has their 6 to 8. That distance had their own stations. The closer coming in beyond what we expected. Volunteers have a safe place to to calm but we're still having trouble with distribution as there is not an easy way to school social workers are not allowed to do their home visit got really creative and were working with a lot of agencies that are our helping with food have to have the food and so we will have, the families will condo get their food and then we have another section of the gym or auditorium where they can also socially distance go like shop for free and get what you need, all while we were sheltering children continue to grow. Seasons changed and now they there's nowhere to go get the close that they need.

Now that things that they have no longer fit our struggling to find ways to we have more clothes and more resources than we've ever had on our just waiting for the Holy Spirit to tell us how to reach them right you hopefully get back to fallen a little good deal to Québec in the school and things get back to someone of the norm from before she cuts her son a little bit what are what's, what's next for the pocket. As you look under for us as a church. It's hard to plan more than just a few weeks out because things keep changing and restrictions keep changing, but we still have a vision and a mission to try to reach the triangle and so you also have a vision of a mission, but what's next for note in the pocket.

As you look to the future, even before all of this are our goals were to one learn how to expand our services so that we can better take care of Wayne County. Most people don't realize that wake County Public school system is the largest school district in North Carolina is the 15th largest in the United States and as we continue develop to serve more and more and more how to do that better also eventually like to start branching out to serve the triangle so branching into Durham and in Chapel Hill so that we are conditioned to be able to replicate our services in other school districts in North Carolina. That's wonderful and so people listening right now.

How can they get involved. If there's any place for them right now. But how can I get involved and help support whether it's financially or with themselves or resources was the best way to do that well deftly visit our website. There's tons of information there. Debbie Debbie Debbie not the pocket.word financially as little as $12 a month you could be a confidence club member. $12 over 12 months is reaches $140 is what it cost us to provide a hold many wardrobe of clothes for a child sponsor child for hundred and $40 or join or $12 a month. Clothing donations are always needed in our website will tell you how we can do that and we have volunteer opportunities both on-site and from home so there's a lot of violent people aren't ready to come volunteer on site yet they can pick up close and sort and I season inside home that helps us tremendously or just skill-based that you have a something that you're really good at that would help us grow our program. We would love to hear from you. Odell's thank you so much for what you do for our county and their kids and families were big fan of known the pockets of your listener right now every listener from make sure you check out known the pocket and what time does give us the website will more time note in the you go Odell's thank you so much for being on the program today. Thank you for joining and listening to our program today and thinking across the meeting Michelle possible. You can find out more information about CrossFit concerts on that shelf is impacted you left, you can contact you to see it vanish for sponsoring this program.

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