On Saturday mornings in downtown Charlottetown, Prince Edward Island, you’ll find a small group of girls and women gathered for breakfast, practical life lessons, and encouragement.
This is the “Saturday Morning Community Club,” a daughter group of the weeknight GEMS group, the girls’ club group offered in most Christian Reformed churches.
GEMS counselors at Charlottetown CRC felt God was calling them to reach out to girls who weren’t able to attend the regularly scheduled meetings. Linda Van Kampen, the clubs coordinator, has also visited the GEMS project in Zambia. She said, “If they can [reach out to girls] in Africa with so little, certainly we can do it here!”
Up to 12 girls have come to the Saturday meetings, even during the summer. They eat, sing, participate in creative movement, learn practical skills such as braiding hair and gardening, and learn about God.
Above all, they are given love and acceptance. Most girls are from low-income families and are being raised by grandmothers or “aunts.” The girls recently said that they wanted to learn how to pray, and the counselors were moved when the girls began to pray for the leaders!
In Charlottetown, God is using the willing hearts of a number of women to fulfill the vision of GEMS: Girls Everywhere Meeting the Savior.