It has been our practice so far to not say no to a scholarship request. Every kid who checks the box saying they need financial assistance gets it – no other questions asks.
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An anonymous donor has seeded an endowed fund with $160,000 in support of our amazing young people across Minnesota and in gratitude to the way these programs grew under Bishop Brian Prior’s leadership from 2010-2020.
Therefore, the aptly named Bishop Brian N. Prior Youth Scholarship Fund, aims to make sure any kid or youth who wants to participate in camps and retreats gets to attend. The Official Resolution for this endowed fund is available here.
In order to fulfill this mission we need to raise an additional $160,000 to make this happen. This would allow us to draw $20,000 for scholarships in interest annually, which is the real need we see over 12 months. These programs create socially equitable access to faith formation opportunities for all episcopal youth in Minnesota.
We raised $20,000 in 2019 and $30,000 in 2020. Our current goal is to raise $40,000 total in 2021, which would bring us over halfway to our overall $160,000 goal.
ECMN’s ministry with young people has been particularly meaningful this year. Amidst the challenges of the pandemic we all are navigating, our young people continue to show us the way. We couldn’t do this important work without you.
In the spring we courageously moved forward with revamped virtual retreat and camp designs, all the while continuing to raise money for this fund. Over 300 young people from all over ECMN joined in for Pre-TEC, MN TEC, and Camp Agape. Our youth said over and over how important these beloved communities are to them. What’s more: their significant engagement, while adapting to new ways of being together, show that they really mean it. Never has there been a more important time to invest in our ECMN youth. In a time where much of our children’s lives are disrupted, we are ready to be a source of formation and support.
As we look forward to the fall, we are working to build new models of online and outdoor ministry to continue bringing these youth together for spiritual renewal and transformation. We anticipate reaching nearly the same number of kids as we would in a normal year, and are always eager to invite and welcome new friends into this community.
This means that our efforts to raise money for the Brian N. Prior Youth Scholarship Fund take on a new feeling of urgency. In the midst of the pandemic, we are committed to caring for our youth while also looking forward to the time when we are able to gather in-person again.
Our statistics continue to show that 1 in 5 of our 600 kids asks for support (either 1/3, 2/3, or full scholarships), and this aligns with national statistics regarding scholarship need for summer camps. This means that this fund is really for every kid in every faith community across ECMN, and that the need we are seeing makes sense.
Thanks for joining us in spreading the word at your faith community and to your networks however you can! View youth testimonials about the impact of these ministries at the bottom of our About Us page.