Archive for the 'Visitation' Category

Birthday Party Hosts Needed

I was just talking with my co-worker, Mary Tomlinson, and she said that we needed a church/church group to host a birthday party at the Polk County Youth Services shelter.  Here is a document that outlines what is needed for that.  If you are interested in putting together a group for this month or in the future (or have questions) you can let me know by calling 321-5077 or e-mailing me at shanev@serveouryouth.org.  You can also contact Mary directly at 321-7557 or maryt@serveouryouth.org.

Thank you Ryan Cosgrove

Ryan playing hangman on the computer with a youth at the shelter. One of our informal mentors, Ryan Cosgrove, is graduating from Grand View College (which is right across the street from Polk County Youth Services).  He has mentored seven boys in the last two years he served with us at the shelter.

He is going on to seminary in Pennsylvania, and we wish him the very best.  Thank you Ryan for your service!  The staff at the shelter appreciate your sacrifice of time coming to meet with the boys, and so do we.

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Go God!

By Shane Vander Hart 

Hey I thought I would share some praises from since last Wednesday.

  • I had the honor of leading a young lady to Christ after our Thursday evening Bible discussion groups at Polk County Youth Services’ Detention Center.
  • Bernie, Mary and I represented SOY at Valley Church’s Cool, Car & Bike Show who had us as the beneficiary of proceeds raised. That was the first time they made that event a fundraiser and we are thankful they chose us. We had our display set up and had a chance to meet some new people.
  • We have a new Bible discussion group leader starting for the Delta Company group at Woodward Academy on Sunday. Pretty soon I’ll be able to hand that group off to Randy Holl who is a member of Perry Bible Church (Perry, IA) to be able to move on to other things (like start new groups).
  • Six young men in that Sunday evening group trusted Christ for the first time as well.
  • Then last night I participated in a birthday party at the Polk County Youth Services’ Youth Shelter with a Bible study group consisting of people from Crossroads Church, Fellowship Bible Church, and Valley Church. It was a great evening, and I know the kids there look forward to it.

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Shelter Picnic at Big Creek State Park

A group from Meredith Drive Reformed Church hosted youth from the Polk County Youth Services’ Shelter for a picnic at Big Creek State Park near Polk City. They enjoyed a pontoon boat ride, ladder golf, Frisbee, scavenger hunt, BBQ and more on July 14th. Three SOY staff were able to join the group from MDRC at this event – Bernie Van Roekel (Executive Director), Mary Tomlinson (Des Moines Volunteer Coordinator), and Shane Vander Hart (Director of Ministries & Volunteer Development).

Volunteer Appreciation at Polk County Youth Services

Polk County Youth Services hosted a volunteer recognition banquet at the transitional shelter on Tuesday evening. Along with numerous volunteers being recognized, several groups were recognized as well. SOY was also honored for eight years of work at Polk County Youth Services.

Chuck Nealy and his wife from West Des Moines United Methodist ChurchPCYS Staff Members
Don Wubbena from Shepherd of the Valley Lutheran Church & Evelyn Libby from West Des Moines United Methodist Church
Tony Rhodes, the PCYS Shelter Administrator handing out recognition certificates

Volunteers from Olivet Baptist Church
Joan Weiser from Glen Echo Christian Church Brian Boyer (in the tie), the Director of Polk County Community, Family & Youth Services speaking with volunteers from Meredith Drive Reformed Church
Olivet Baptist Church volunteers


Shane Vander Hart with volunteers Rich & Elaine Thomson from Hope Lutheran Church