SOS Academy Re-Cap | Sidney Dennis

Oh what a year this has been. I moved into a house with three great friends, got to work with the best co-workers in Memphis, and got to hang out with students after school for my job. Not to mention I got to keep up my learning bug by taking classes at Memphis Center for Urban Theological Studies(MCUTS). The SOS Academy has stretched me and grown me is more ways than I could have imagined. Just after graduating and entering the SOS Academy I thought that I wanted to go into program directing for a non profit, but after my time spent with these kids and getting to know more about the schools I am looking to take my next steps into urban education. I believe that schools are more than just teachers; they are administration, counselors, and staff that all care about the students and want them to succeed. I want to be part of that team. I have learned so much this year and want to keep learning from the people and this city that has so much to offer. I wanted to share some of the highlights from this year with you!

  • I loved the Saturday this past fall that the Highschool Builders prepared and participated in a community building day put on by the Heights CDC. They cut wood and assembled benches with community members from The Heights neighborhoods. They got to use all the skills that they have accumulated through their years and they were the leaders of the day.

  • Through the MCUTS classes I have had many opportunities to work with other students and put what we are learning into action. This particular picture was taken at the church that I have called my home this year where Ally, Valenta, and I attended a service together and then assessed their strengths as an incarnational witness ministry within the neighborhood.

  • In January we took the high schoolers to Kooky Canucks for a Christmas party and apparently a burger eating competition too. It was a hoot to hang out with them on the weekend and sit down over a meal together.

  • The international vision trip to Rwanda taught me so much, and widened my perspectives from just urban american ministry, to rural Rwandan ministry. (this picture is from the Suzu primary school where we met many students at the end of their school day and practiced lots of English with our new friends)

  • Spring break camps were a special time for me to get back to the hard labor of roofing with some amazing groups of college students from Ohio, Illinois, Michigan, Texas, and Missouri.

  • This spring the middle school builders finished the picnic tables they have been working on since January and they have started to deliver them to all the homeowners we are going to partner with this summer.
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