Updated: Aug 30, 2018
A little over 3.5 years ago, I knocked on Friendship Baptist’s door and shared the vision of Charleston Bilingual Academy with Pastor Rod. I walked in thinking he would listen, nod politely with some uh huh’s, and then put his hand on my shoulder and pray and then send me on my way. Instead Friendship opened their doors wide for CBA that day. A month later the school began with 3 teachers and 7 students. Now, 42 months and 2 renovations later, we opened our doors this August to 160 little world changers, including 18 first graders and 19 kindergarteners (especially when Christian schools have declined by 30% in the last 10 years).
Why such unprecedented growth? There is something special happening at Charleston Bilingual Academy. We believe God is up to something- and He is using our school to change the trajectory of our children's’ lives. In a culture where children are immersed with privilege and complacency, we are inspiring children to not live small lives focused on themselves, but instead we are leading them navigate, love and learn from other cultures (removing barriers before they are ever built). Simultaneously, we are equipping our children to communicate in multiple languages taking advantage of their linguistic geniuses. We then instill in our children the great, selfless love of the Triune God. Moved by this love, empowered by language and critical thinking, and encouraged to engage other cultures, we believe our children will one day change not just our community but the world- one child at a time.
One day when our children are older and look back reflecting on their lives, they are going to realize so many of their life decisions were impacted way back when, by the school where their parents sent them (e.g. the languages they speak, perhaps where they travelled and lived, maybe even their spouse, and definitely the other lives they would have changed).
Our growth over the last 3 years has only occurred because of Friendship Baptist Church’s generosity and openness, donors (CBA parents and Grandparents, Friendship members, North Charleston Rotary), furniture donations (First Baptist Church North Charleston), IT donations (Blackbaud, Palmetto Christian Academy, PACE charter), redoing the drainage system in our internal playground (Chandler Construction’s donation) and lots of parent workdays!
Our current renovations will allow for 3 more years of growth (while lengthening the waiting list at each level). Starting the 2021-2022 school year, we will walk into our new elementary building which will be in the back parking lot (the parking will move to the adjacent grassy field). We seek to raise $4 million dollars in the next 2 years to begin construction in 2020. The fundraising will occur in two waves. In the next 6 months (September- February) we are raising the initial seed money (10%= $400,000). A previous donor has offered a matching gift of $200,000. Therefore we are asking every family to invest their “talents.” Like the biblical parable that Jesus told, we are asking you to multiple your investment. For example if you only have $100 to give, instead of giving that $ to the building fund, perhaps host a meal instead ($100) and connect me with 5 potential donors… We already had 1 parent turn her 40th birthday into a facebook campaign where she raised over $400 for her son’s future elementary school. The creative options are endless. We will be hosting world class concerts (with child care) and online silent auctions.
We would like to ask you to start praying about how you can invest your talents to help us reach our first goal of raising $200K by February.
Soli Deo Gloria