We are called to make a difference in our world and be a light in our community by meeting the deepest needs of those around the world and those next door.

At Chase Oaks, we believe we should glow in the dark. We move into hopelessness, need, and injustice with the redeeming power of Jesus Christ. We realize that God has called us here to be a light.

This summer, we have some great local opportunities for all of us to make a difference and be a light in our community.

Participate in SchoolZone.

One of the easiest ways to be a light in our community is to support students and teachers in our local schools. This school year, there will be many families who struggle to provide the necessary school supplies for their children. To help each child have a successful start to their school year, the Woodbridge Campus and Chase Oaks Family Center will host school supply drives to support schools in their communities.

SchoolZone at the Woodbridge Campus

SchoolZone at the Woodbridge Campus will collect school supplies for Wylie ISD’s Back-to-School Fair, an annual fair for families in need that provides free backpacks with school supplies, immunizations, and haircuts. Local organizations such as food pantries and libraries attend the fair and provide resources for the families.

The Woodbridge Campus will collect school supplies during the weekend services of July 5/7 and July 12/14. To participate, simply purchase some of the supplies needed: wide-ruled composition books, primary journals (Kindergarten-Grade 2), pencil top erasers, and two-pocket folders with three-prong fasteners. Check out Amazon to buy these supplies!

Aside from donating supplies, there are also opportunities to make Wylie ISD’s Back-to-School Fair happen. For more information about serving opportunities, contact Keri Powell at .

SchoolZone at the Chase Oaks Family Center

Every year, the Chase Oaks Family Center hosts its annual SchoolZone Store, where families in need can purchase backpacks filled with school supplies for only $5 per child. Since most teachers use their personal funds to buy school supplies, SchoolZone will also invite teachers from several local schools to shop for their classroom for free.

This year, our SchoolZone Store will benefit families from Mendenhall Elementary, Terrace Elementary, Agape & Resource Assistance Center, Shiloh Place, and Family Promise.

There are two ways to participate to be a light in our community. First of all, you and your friends, family, neighbors, co-workers, or LifeGroups can purchase backpacks filled with school supplies for selected grade levels. You can drop off donations during the weekend services of July 19-21 and July 26-28 at one of the following campuses: Legacy Campus (located in Plano, TX), En Español Campus (located in Plano, TX)Sloan Creek Campus (located in Fairview, TX), and Richardson Campus (located in Richardson, TX).

You can also serve at the SchoolZone Store by assisting families with their shopping, sorting backpacks, and stocking school supplies. SchoolZone shopping will take place from July 31-August 3. Sign up to serve online or via the Chase Oaks App.

Pray over our community.

Another great way to be a light in our community is to pray for the people around us. Through prayer, we can invite God’s love and light into our community.

At Prayer and Pencils, the Legacy Campus and Woodbridge Campus will be praying over our local schools to invite love into the students’ and teachers’ lives.

Prayer and Pencils in Plano ISD

On Sunday, August 11, Chase Oakers from the Legacy Campus will bring prayer and pencils to Mendenhall Elementary and Rasor Elementary in Plano, TX. They will be praying over the students, teachers, and staff as they begin a new school year. For more information about Prayer and Pencils in Plano ISD, contact Campus Outreach Director Tracy Parlin at .

Prayer and Pencils in Wylie ISD

On Monday, August 5, Chase Oakers from the Woodbridge Campus will come together to pray for the students and teachers at Hartman Elementary in Wylie, TX. For more information, contact Campus Admin Karen Bannis at [email protected].

Help welcome new students at a local college.

When we think of ways to help students and teachers start off the school year with success, we tend to think of the K-12 schools in our local districts. But there is another group of students going back to school in August—college students!

On Thursday, August 29, at 7:00 p.m., the University of Texas at Dallas in Richardson, TX will host the UTD InterVarsity Burger Bash. This year, you can partner with InterVarsity to welcome new students with free burgers, hot dogs, and grilled cheese sandwiches. There are several different shifts from 4:00-10:00 p.m.

If you cannot serve at the event, you can also welcome new students by donating food for the event. For more information about serving or donating food, contact Richardson Campus Outreach Director Jeremy Thomason at .

Partner with a local organization.

At Chase Oaks, we have many local partners that are doing amazing things in our community. And this summer, we have some great opportunities to partner with these organizations and be a light in our community.

Family Promise at Sloan Creek

This year in America, more than 2.5 million children will experience homelessness. Family Promise is a nonprofit organization that provides food, shelter, and support services to families with children as they regain sustainable independence. Over 200,000 volunteers are making a difference in their communities through Family Promise. And you can join these men and women and be a light in the lives of children who are facing homelessness and poverty.

Our Sloan Creek Campus will be hosting families from August 25-September 1. Make a difference in these families’ lives by serving as an overnight host or providing a meal or supplies for the families. For more information about this opportunity, contact Pamela Ingram at [email protected].

5 Loaves Food Pantry at Woodbridge

In North Texas, 1 in 6 people are food insecure. To help fight hunger in our community, our Woodbridge Campus partners with 5 Loaves Food Pantry in Sachse, TX. Their mission is to “provide food and support for all ages [and] to nourish both the body and the soul.”

On Wednesday, July 24, from 1:00-3:00 p.m., children in elementary and Studio 56 will serve at 5 Loaves Food Pantry and love others in unexpected ways. They will complete tasks such as sorting and organizing food for the local pantry. For more information about this serving opportunity, contact Kidzone Pastor Darby Ridgway at .

This summer, we can glow in the dark by serving on one of our campus teams, partnering with local organizations, or participating in Love Does The Unexpected. Let’s be a light in our community by loving others in big ways!