ROP’s Food Bank, ESL Program and P4AP Looking for Participants

This will be quick. I want to make you aware of three opportunities to partner with ROP in serving our disadvantaged community:

  1. The first opportunity is with ROP’s Food Bank. Earlier this year, we began receiving food from the South Glen Whole Foods store. The perishable foods provided by Whole Foods have been a huge blessing to the people served by ROP’s Food Bank.  We would love to add a few more people to the team that collect the food at Whole Foods and/or drive the food to ROP. If you are available around noon on Monday’s and are interested in this opportunity, please contact Tish Freeman at [email protected].
  1. Opportunity no. 2 is with ROP’s English as a Second Language program.  We are hoping to start a Wednesday evening conversational English class for those who are unable to attend our morning classes.  This will be a time for them to practice speaking and build a friendship with a native speaker.  We need 2-3 more volunteers to make this happen.  We will meet 6:00-7:30 p.m. at the ROP building.  You can volunteer every week or every other Wednesday.  Please consider joining us!  Anyone interested should contact Angie Long at [email protected].
  1. While the first two opportunities are ongoing, the final opportunity is for just one day and is coming up very soon, like this Saturday. It is an opportunity to get some exercise, enjoy some fellowship with family and friends and help ROP raise some much needed support so that we can keep offering programs like our Food Bank and ESL program. Yes, this is another shameless but brief plug for Pedal 4A Purpose, ROP’s annual bike ride and run/walk.  There are many good reasons to do this, including of course the support thing and an ideal weather forecast, but I will not bother repeating them all again here. For more information, to register or to donate just click on this link.

 Thanks for your consideration of these opportunities to partner with ROP in serving our needy community.

One Day in Support of One Community and Several Ministry Partners

Pedal 4A Purpose is coming up very soon, just This coming Saturday on September 22nd. It promises to be a special day of good fun and fellowship and great weather. Yes, my weather program is forecasting a perfect day with lots of sun, no rain and temps in the mid 70s.

But the best thing about this day that makes it most special (at least for me) is that it supports all the things that happen almost every day at Restoration Outreach Programs, and with our staff and our ministry partners, Denver Leadership Initiative and Christian Cycling.

Just last Wednesday at ROP:

• 25+ students participated in English as a Second Language class,

•70 homeless men and women received a Chik fil A lunch and some prayer and care,

•10 students were tutored in our Work Readiness program,

•8 children participated in Reading mentoring at Crawford Elementary, and

•14 children sang songs, played games and learned from the Bible as part of our evening Spark program (photo).

On other days of the week:

•8 students receive seminary level Bible training

•100 families receive food and a lot of care.

So, I hope you will consider joining us for a bike ride or run/walk on a beautiful Colorado day, but even if you cannot make it, please consider making a donation and using this special day to support a lot of special ministry that happens year-round through ROP and our ministry partners.

Thanks for your consideration.

Pedal 4A Purpose Economics Hard to Beat

Pedal 4A Purpose 2018 – 9/22/18

Did you know that your Pedal 4A Purpose Registration includes the following?

  • A $20 gift certificate from Wheatridge Cyclery
  • A Pedal 4A Purpose t-shirt (bet you can’t guess what color it will be this year)
  • A Pedal 4A Purpose water bottle
  • Lunch from Chick-fil-A
  • Snacks and beverages at 6 Aid Stations manned (and womanned) by our awesome volunteers

All this for just $40 per individual and $90 per family (of three or more). Hard to beat these economics – right?


  • All participants have an opportunity to win some cool door prizes, and
  • Those who choose to raise funds or donate will receive a ticket in our major prize drawing for every $250 donated/raised. Major prizes include:
    • $1000 toward the purchase of a bike at Schwab Cycles
    • Wheatridge Cyclery stuff
    • Full auto-detailing from AutoNation Subaru Arapahoe
    • $50 – 100+ gift certificates from Schwab Cycles and Pedal

And of course, the best “economic” return of all is that you are partnering with Restoration Outreach Programs and our non-profit partners to raise much needed funding in support of our ministries.

How many other charity fund-raisers can you think of that offer these kind of economics?

You can register or donate by clicking this link.

I hope to see you on Saturday, September 22nd, at The Bridge Church at Bear Creek (new name, but same location as last year).

Back Pack Project Provides Nice Back Drop for Meeting School’s New Principal

This will be pretty quick. Recently, several of us went to Crawford Elementary for their annual Back to School Resource Fair.  The purpose was to promote several ROP programs for kids and parents, but while there, the school’s director of after-school programming and our main contact handed me a stack of “thank you notes” from students for the back packs and supplies ROP was able to provide to every student in the school a couple weeks ago.

ROP was only able to bless the students, their families and the school in this tangible way thanks to the partnership and support of Cherry Hills Community Church, Valor High School and the many individuals who contributed to our “School Supplies” project. This is really huge not only for the school but also ROP’s relationship with the school, as evidenced by Crawford’s new Principal, Michael Abdale, coming to our table, introducing himself and expressing his personal thanks for the back packs and supplies.

So, I know I have expressed our thanks to all who contributed to this project before, but this time I want to pass along the thanks of the students supported by just a few of their Thank You Notes.

We still have room for a few more people to join our awesome Reading Mentoring team.  This semester the program begins with training on Wednesday, 9/5, at 3:15 p.m. at Crawford. The program runs every Wednesday after that from 3:15 to 5 p.m. for 10 weeks. This program offers an incredibly powerful way to impact a child’s life. Please contact me if you are interested or just have questions.

Pedal 4A Purpose 2018 is just 4 weeks away on Saturday, September 22nd. Click here for more information or to register. And be sure to invite others to join you in this fun event which provides much needed funding for ROP’s ministry and other partnering non-profits. Registration fees go up on September 1st.

Calling All Reading Mentors – Training Provided – No Previous Experience Required

When you help a child succeed academically, you are helping him or her succeed in life. That is the opportunity you have to make a difference as one of ROP’s awesome team of after-school Reading Mentors.

Our Reading Mentor team has a few openings this semester. So, if you are available on Wednesday afternoons, from 3:15 to 5:00 p.m. and are interested in joining our Mentor team at our neighborhood elementary school (Crawford), I strongly encourage you to email me.  No previous experience is required, just a heart to help a child. Training will be provided on Wednesday, September 5th, and the first mentoring session for the Fall semester will begin the following Wednesday, September 12th.

We want to help as many kids as we can. So, even if you just have questions about the program, please email me at [email protected]

P.S. Pedal 4A Purpose 2018 is 6 weeks away on Saturday, September 22nd. Click here for more information or to register. And be sure to invite others to join you in this fun event which provides much needed funding for ROP’s ministry and other partnering non-profits.

School Supplies Bless Students, Families and Teachers of Neighborhood School

Things slow down a bit at ROP in August with both our English as a Second Language and Work Readiness programs taking much needed breaks.  But this past week was a busy one with lots going on related to our Back Packs for Crawford project.

Tuesday, we started setting up our assembly line. Since this is the first time we have done it this way, I was amazed at how many boxes we needed open to get ready for the “stuffing” team, but there were a lot.

Wednesday evening was “stuffing” time.  We hoped we could get it done in less than three hours, but our team of 15 freshman (and three adult drivers) from Valor High School did an awesome job, stuffing 492 back packs and cleaning up in just two hours.

On Thursday morning a group of 6-7 Flourish East Colfax friends loaded a friend’s trailer at ROP and unloaded it at Crawford. When school starts next week, every student will receive a back pack filled with school supplies. Our friends at Crawford are delighted and very thankful.

And so am I. Many people contributed to making this happen. Our thanks go out to all the donors, stuffers and loaders who played a part in blessing the children, families and teachers of our neighborhood elementary school.

Well done team. Project complete!

ROP’s Reading Mentoring program at Crawford starts up on Wednesday, 9/5. If you are available on Wednesdays between 3:15 and 5 p.m. or just interested in learning more about this very strategic program, please contact me (Kent) by email or phone.

Pedal 4A Purpose 2018 is  7 weeks away on Saturday, September 22nd. Click here for more information or to register. And be sure to invite others to join you in this fun event which provides much needed funding for ROP’s ministry and other partnering non-profits.

Check Out the Latest Happenings at ROP

The latest bi-monthly edition of ROP’s eNewsletter – Urban Voices – is now available on ROP’s website.
This 2-page edition of Urban Voices includes the following articles:
  • Many Opportunities for Summer (Year-round) Groups – Summer is an especially busy time for ROP’s Office Manager, Vicki Ekberg, as she organizes, leads and teaches a wide variety of work groups looking for ways to serve and learn.
  • Everybody – Always – …is the title of the Bob Goff book that ROP’s staff is currently reading and discussing at the beginning of our weekly staff meetings. It’s core message is central to the heart of ROP’s ministry. We love it. You might too.
  • RCEC – Called to Serve the Trafficked and the Addicted – One of the cool things God has orchestrated in 2018 is the spin-off from ROP of Restoration Counseling on East Colfax (RCEC). RCEC’s founder, Deb Ford, shares about what God has done to help launch RCEC and invites all interested to RCEC’s inaugural dinner on September 14th.
Click on this link – Urban Voices – August 1, 2018 Edition. (If you cannot see the embedded version, just click on the link below it to access the current and older editions of Urban Voices.)
Hope you enjoy this edition of Urban Voices.
P.S. Stay tuned for a report on the delivery, earlier today, of back packs and school supplies to Crawford Elementary School.
P.S.S Pedal 4A Purpose 2018 is  7 weeks away on Saturday, September 22nd. Click here for more information or to register. And be sure to invite others to join you in this fun event which provides much needed funding for ROP’s ministy and other partnering non-profits.

Trash Vigilante Making a Difference in Northwest Aurora

Meet Bill Gondrez, aka Mr. Bill.  Bill is a pre-school teacher in Aurora Public Schools who moonlights as a trash vigilante in his off-hours. I first met Bill when he came to one of our Flourish East Colfax Neighborhood Meetings to present the Blockmeister Program.  Following Bill’s presentation, ROP and several of our neighbors signed up as Blockmeisters with the primary responsibility of keeping the trash picked-up around our homes, buildings and streets. In our neighborhood, this is an ongoing challenge and clearly not a current priority for many of our neighbors, but our hope is that, as our neighbors see their neighbors picking up trash in front of their homes, they might choose to join us in making our community a trash free environment. And although this often feels like a very long-term goal, a wonderful by-product of doing this on a regular basis is that we have more opportunities to engage with and get to know more of our neighbors, which is a very good thing.

But back to Mr. Bill. While the Blockmeister Program is a good solution for all the plastic bottles, pop cans, fast food wrappers and other small stuff that litters our streets, it provides no answers for the mattresses, couches, tires, shelving, pallettes and other big stuff that clutters the sides of alleys throughout northwest Aurora. Most people just complain about this junk, but not Mr. Bill.  Through Flourish East Colfax, Bill applied for and received a $2,000 grant from the Stapleton Foundation to clean-up the big trash in Northwest Aurora’s alleys – well maybe not all of the alleys. But beginning in June and on one Saturday a month, Bill rents a truck, fills it with the “big stuff” and takes it to the big public dump east of E470. If Bill could do it by himself, he probably would, but the “big stuff” takes two people. So several of our Flourish East Colfax neighbors/participants, including yours truly, have had an opportunity to partner with Mr. Bill in this worthy endeavor, and we will continue doing so, one Saturday morning a month, until the money runs out.
There were other things I could have done this past Saturday morning, but I am glad I chose to spend a few hours taking a load of trash to the dump and making our community just a little nicer. Along the way we had the opportunity to meet a few more people, tell them what we are doing and directly or indirectly encourage them to be a part of cleaning up our community. The big bonus is it gave me some quality time to get to know Mr. Bill a little better. I thank God for him and all those who are working to make our community a better place to live and work.
P.S. I am thankful to report that we raised almost exactly the amount needed to complete the purchase of back packs and supplies needed to provide these items to all 490 students at Crawford Elementary, which will happen on August 2nd.
P.S.S. Pedal 4A Purpose 2018 is just two months away on Saturday, September 22nd. Click here for more information or to register. And be sure to invite others to join you in this fun event which provides much needed funding for ROP’s ministy and other partnering non-profits.

School Supplies – Pedal 4A Purpose – Kent on Radio

School Supplies:

So far, we have raised a little more than $1700 toward our goal of $3000 which will enable us to provide a back pack filled with school supplies to each of Crawford Elementary School’s 490 students. To donate toward this very practical need, click on this link to ROP’s website or just send a check to ROP, PO Box 632, Aurora CO 80040, and make sure to put “School Supplies” in the comment box on-line or on the memo line of your check.

Kent on 850 KOA Radio, 7 a.m. Sunday, July 8th:

Every Sunday morning from 7 to 7:30 a.m. on 850 KOA radio, Bo Mitchell interviews a leader of a local faith based non-profit on the program You Get the Blessing. I recently had the pleasure of being Bo’s interviewee and the result of that interview will be aired on the morning of Sunday, July 8th.  Bo spent a good portion of our time together asking about my experience with depression 20 years ago, so I did not have quite as much opportunity to talk about things currently going on at ROP as I might have liked. But hopefully, God will use it as He desires in the lives of those who listen. Tune in at your own risk :-).

Pedal 4A Purpose:

The date of this year’s Pedal 4A Purpose is still almost three months away on Saturday, September 22nd. Registration fees are $35 per individual and $80 per family of three or more. To register or for more information, click on this link to the P4AP Website.

That’s it for now. Thanks for your partnership and consideration of these opportunities.

P4AP Early Registration Deadline – Partner with ROP in Blessing Families with School Supplies

First a quick update:
I am very happy and thankful to report that several people responded to my eblast of a couple weeks ago and have volunteered to help transport food from the South Glen Whole Foods to ROP on Mondays. This is a big blessing to our Food Bank program and all those who enjoy the perishable food (fruit and veggies, dairy and baked goods) provided by Whole Foods. Thank you, Lord!
Next an update and reminder:
In the same eblast, I also mentioned the need to raise $2,500 in order that we could provide a Back Pack and school supplies to the 490 students at nearby Crawfor Elementary School. As of today, we have raised $1,180 toward this goal. So, we are hoping to raise at least another $1,300, and it’s actually $1,800 after the school asked last week if we could add a pack of 4 dry erase markers for each student. Many thanks to those who have chosen to partner with us in meeting this very practical need of the families in our community. If you are feeling led to join them, I encourage you to do so.
Finally, another reminder:
For anyone interested in having some fun while getting some exercise and helping ROP raise some much needed funding, I just want to remind you that the June 30 deadline for early registration for Pedal 4A Purpose 2018 is coming up soon. On Sunday July 1st, registration fees will go from $30 to $35 per individual and $70 to $80 perfamily of three or more.  So, if you want to save a few bucks by registering before prices go up or simply get more information about this year’s event, all you need to do is click on this link to the P4AP WebsiteThe date of this year’s event is Saturday, September 22nd.
That’s it for now. Thanks for your partnership and consideration of these opportunities.