Here at St. Peter, we are so blessed to call Chaddock our neighbor. Chaddock serves approximately 400 children through their Residential Program, Chaddock School, and Foster Care services, and is known especially for their work with children with trauma.
The Chaddock Outreach Ministry at St. Peter was started in 2020 by Elizabeth and Ryan Brown. The main goal is to be good neighbors to those at Chaddock. There are currently 30 to 40 parishioners who participate in the ministry and there are all different ways that you can get involved.
Chaddock has five cottages with 10 kids to a cottage. The outreach ministry puts together cottage teams, through which a group of five volunteers is connected to a certain cottage. Cottage teams do different things with their cottage, such as providing holiday snacks and other things that children would receive at home.
The outreach ministry organizes a few different activities throughout the year with the students at Chaddock, including an ice cream social on the first day of school and a cookout for the residents. The ministry also helps the Chaddock Activities Coordinator, Pam, with different events.
“The school does a nice dinner and movie for the students, so we help prep and serve,” Elizabeth says. “At Thanksgiving, we help cook and serve a lunch, and we help with games at their spring carnival. Students at St. Peter’s make cards that get handed out to students at Chaddock. We also have a couple different collections for things like hygiene products, hats, and gloves. And at Christmastime, they do a Santa Express, so we help sort and wrap the gifts to get them ready to distribute.”
The Chaddock Outreach Ministry strives to include Chaddock in parish activities, just like you might include your house neighbor. Some examples include inviting the students to the Parish Picnic and S’mores Night.
This ministry is open to all parishioners, and there are even opportunities for younger students to get involved.
“I have a cottage that is boys, ages 10-15,” Elizabeth says. “I invited some of the seventh and eighth-graders at St. Peter to go bowling with us. It is nice for the Chaddock residents to be around outside kids. It is also a wonderful experience for our St. Peter’s kids to help make them feel like part of the community.”
There are so many different ways to get involved, from volunteering your time on a Cottage Team to simply donating items for the Chaddock residents.
“This group is about showing love and compassion and care to our neighbors,” Elizabeth says. “Workers from Chaddock told us that the residents say the workers love them because it is their job. But the volunteers at St. Peter’s do nice things because they want to and they want to love them and support them. This ministry can be anything you want it to be. We simply want to be good neighbors.”
If you have questions or would like to get involved with the Chaddock Outreach Ministry, contact Elizabeth Brown at ElizabethBrown12@gmail.com or 217-257-9085.