January, 2016 was an exciting time for Begin Anew. In partnership with Brentwood Baptist Church, and the Church at Woodbine, Begin Anew opened an auxiliary site offering ESL classes on Monday evenings and Wednesday mornings. The Begin Anew staff and volunteers assisting with the opening had no idea how many students would show up for classes. To our surprise and delight, within the first two weeks we had a total of 52 ESL students - 16 men and 36 women from at least 15 countries attending class! We had obviously hit upon the felt need of the community!
As the weeks continued, we were all amazed at the continued commitment of our students and their great desire to learn. It became increasingly clear that a Program Director would need to be hired to oversee the new site. After a thorough search and many prayers, I am pleased to announce that Charlotte Hanson will soon be joining our team as the Program Director for the Woodbine site.
For the past year, Charlotte has served as the Minister-in-Residence at Woodbine. Her residency, overseen by Brentwood Baptist Church, allowed her to have hands on experience in doing ministry work, while also receiving support and guidance in a structured learning environment. During her residency, her assigned ministry tasks included teaching ESL (Woodbine campus), healthcare classes for newly arrived refugees (Siloam Family Medical Center), assisting in event coordination and volunteer recruitment for the Medical Dental Unit ministry (Woodbine) and tutoring students at the Reading Clinic (Whitsitt Elementary School). In Charlotte’s words, “My work as a resident at the Church at Woodbine has given me valuable insight to Woodbine’s community needs, established relationships with people currently living in the community and hands-on ministry experience that empowers and transforms the lives of people living in poverty.” Prior to her residency at Woodbine, Charlotte served for 16 years as a coordinator for conferences, training events, and mission journeys at the Tennessee Baptist Convention.
Please join me in welcoming Charlotte to Begin Anew!