New Location for our Graduation Ceremony on December 8

By: Joni Burnell, Volunteer Recruiter & Trainer

In just a few days, on December 8th, Begin Anew will celebrate our graduates!  It is a very exciting time as we pause to think about how far our students have come and pray for them as they consider where they will go from here on their journey forward.

While this celebration is an unchanging tradition for us, at least one thing will be different.  We will be in a new location this time.  Eastland Baptist Church at 1215 Gallatin Ave. in Nashville will be providing their space for our event, and we would like to express our deep gratitude to this church and to Pastor Jason Rumbaugh for his gracious hospitality toward Begin Anew.  If you would like to visit, they offer Sunday School classes at 9:30 AM, and they have a café that serves coffee and doughnuts from 10:30 -10:50 am.  Sunday morning service begins at 10:50 am. 

God seems to be very busy at work in our midst, calling on us all to learn new things, meet new people, rise to new challenges, and go to new places.  It can feel unsettling for us sometimes as we are thrust into change, but one thing we can be sure will always be the same…  “The steadfast love of the Lord never ceases; his mercies never come to an end; they are new every morning; and great is His faithfulness.”  Lamentations 3:22-23.

Heather Norvell Named Begin Anew of Middle Tennessee Executive Director



Heather Norvell Named Begin Anew of Middle Tennessee Executive Director

NASHVILLE, Tenn. – (November 12, 2018) Begin Anew of Middle Tennessee, formerly Christian Women’s Job Corps, announces today that Heather Norvell has been named the ministry’s Executive Director. Rebekah (Becky) K. Sumrall recently retired after 18 years of faithful service.

Begin Anew of Middle Tennessee believes everyone deserves a second chance. The 501(c)(3) nonprofit empowers women and men to overcome life-changing obstacles caused by poverty with education, mentoring, and resources.

The organization provides three curriculum tracks for adult-aged students: high school equivalency/HiSet (GED) test preparation, computer and job skills, and English as a Second Language (ESL) training. Enrollment is free and open to persons of all faiths and culture. Free childcare is provided to students as well as one-on-one mentoring.

“The staff and volunteers of Begin Anew ultimately offer hope to those in need. I am thankful to serve an organization committed to walking alongside our students while empowering and encouraging them to grow as they step into their future, and it brings great joy to celebrate our graduates and their amazing journeys,” states Heather.

Heather’s 23 years of experience includes leadership positions in ministry and commercial business, including ministry responsibilities at Long Hollow Baptist Church, The People’s Church (now Church of the City), and Brentwood Baptist Church. She spent more than 15 years in leadership positions at area-businesses relative to their financial functions.

Heather has previously served as board member and treasurer for The Refuge Center for Counseling in Franklin. Other volunteer work includes apprenticeships for The Charles Simeon Trust and The Giving Circle.

A graduate in business administration from Belmont University, Heather earned a Master of Divinity degree from Southern Baptist Theological Seminary in Louisville, Ky. Heather and her husband Michael live in Brentwood with their two children.

Begin Anew of Middle Tennessee conducts its programming at six area locations in Nashville, Madison, and Franklin. Learn more about ways to donate and become involved at Connect with their mission on Twitter (@BeginAnewMidTN), Facebook (@BeginAnewMiddleTN), and YouTube.

Time to Celebrate Our Volunteers!!

Mary Catherine Strobel Award 2018.jpg

This week, Begin Anew of Middle TN celebrated some of our incredible volunteers at the Mary Catherine Strobel Award Luncheon! The room was filled with people who work and volunteer at local non-profits throughout Nashville. Truly, the room seemed to pulse with the energy of a people who truly care for this city. What an inspiring place to be!

Let me introduce you to some of our inspiring volunteers:

Linda Jones and Danni Hughes represented the group from Covenant Baptist Church. This amazing group has been serving meals about once a month to our Nashville site students for 3 years. This church provides Christmas presents for the students and snacks and juice boxes for the childcare program. Several of the ladies from Covenant Baptist are also serving as prayer partners or tutors on a weekly basis. We are absolutely blessed by them!

Another one of our amazing volunteers, Casey Enright, is the founder and director of The Word Wagon. The Word Wagon is a literacy organization dedicated to promoting childhood literacy by providing reading opportunities and reading materials for children who lack access to books. Casey brings The Word Wagon to our Begin Anew childcare program once a month and the kids love it! The kids jump for joy knowing that she is coming! She reads stories to groups and one-on-one with the students. Every time she comes, she sends each child home with a bundle of books. 

It was such a joy to celebrate some of the most selfless, compassionate, and loyal volunteers we are blessed to have on our team at the Mary Catherine Strobel Award Luncheon!



Students serving Our Students

Earlier this month, volunteers from Bethel's student ministry joined us at the Williamson County site to help us get organized and stay ready for students! From cleaning children's toys in preparation for sick season to writing notes of encouragement to our students, these young volunteers demonstrated sweet servants' hearts as they worked behind the scenes to serve our students. 

We absolutely love having high school volunteers join us! Are you or do you know a student who would benefit from serving? How about sharing the Gospel with children? Well, we have a perfect opportunity! Come join us by serving in childcare. Students not only get the opportunity to learn from and serve people, but they will get to take part in the great commission on a weekly basis. To join us, please fill out the volunteer application above under the "Get Involved" tab or email

Thanks, Bethel, for showing students that volunteering can begin at any age! Your kindness will impact the lives of many students to come!