For the past four years, Calvary Lutheran Church in North Richland Hills has been ringing in the New Year with an “Extreme Home Makeover” project – home, that is, to the Nelson Center children. The youth group at Calvary spends the entire year raising funds to complete their service project, and they come in their Calvary Lutheran bus as a group to the Nelson Center during the first or second weekend of January to “make-over” an area of the Center.
The first year they painted and decorated each room for the “Little Boys” (ages 5-8). The second year they took on the “Adolescent Boys” rooms (ages 12-15), and last year they remodeled the “Big Boys” rooms (ages 9-11). Each dorm has 6-8 rooms with 2-3 boys per room.
This is the drill: Calvary drives up to Nelson Center on a Friday night, meets with the kids in each room, and asks them what design they would like on their walls. The church kids immediately head to Wal-Mart, Target, Lowes, Home Depot, Hobby Lobby, and wherever else they need to go to get supplies, and then spend the night in a local hotel. Bright and early on Saturday morning they arrive at Nelson Center to get to work – and don’t leave until the job is done – usually about 10 hours!
This year they took on an even BIGGER project – the Nelson Center gym! The leaders met with our coach on Friday, discussed what his “dream gym” would look like, and came back on Saturday to make it happen. The kids have a great time and are hard-working, knowing that their mission make-over will be the talk of the Nelson Center for months to come.
The Nelson Center kids, upon seeing the gym, were in awe and couldn’t believe the new designs and motivational feel of the décor. Even the Nelson Center staff was left speechless. The kids and staff spend so much time in the gym, the inspirational words written on the walls now remind everyone daily of their goals and their mission to be a part of healing and hope for dozens of young lives every day.