Brilliant ideas can spring from the most unusual circumstances.
Matt Ticzkus can testify to that. The 33 year-old Administrator at Victory Baptist Academy, (VBA), recently completed the inaugural Leadership Weatherford class, organized by the Weatherford Chamber of Commerce.
“It was very eye opening,” Ticzkus said. “Throughout the year we were challenged to think of ways to impact our community and be more involved.”
But it occurred to him that one of his weaknesses, was in fact, community involvement.
Shortly after the classes were over, and fresh from the experience, Ticzkus said it was posters hanging throughout the VBA’s campus that got him to thinking.
“Make a Difference for Christ. That’s our theme for the school year,” he said. “Practically thinking I wondered how we could integrate the two. How could we make a difference for Christ and become more involved in the community”
He said it was with that sentiment in his heart he began thinking of what he had learned in Leadership Weatherford.
“I started thinking what ‘big goal’ could we have while making a difference for Christ and it came to me,” Ticzkus said.
He said he issued a challenge, to both parents and students, to volunteer their time in the community. Sounds a little trite, but remember Ticzkus said “big goal.” So, his challenge was for the school to donate 10,000 hours of volunteerism.
“We met with our parents during our annual ‘meet the teacher night’ where they agreed to the challenge,” he said. “It’s exciting to think of what kind of impact we can have in our community. But equally, the impact it can have in the lives of our own families.”
He said often people get busy doing their own thing when they forget an important foundational truth.
“As Christians we follow the example of Christ and He is one that served others,” Ticzkus said.
All total VBA serves 85 families with 141 students. Ticzkus said that works out to 120 hours per family over the course of 10 months, the time frame for the challenge.
“So from September to June that equals to about 12 hours per family per month,” Ticzkus added.
One project they are involved with is the new Miracle League Parker County where students and families work as buddies, fans, or help with the concession. Some also work at the Center of Hope’s, Hope Chest on Friday sorting clothes, still others at Grace House.
Moving forward they are looking at a variety of projects with the city regarding trash pickup.
“It is exciting to see Matt and Victory Baptist Academy making such a positive impact on our community,” said Tammy Gazzola, President of the Weatherford Chamber of Commerce. “Leadership Weatherford was designed to help identify and motivate potential community leaders; provide educational experience that focuses on community issues and needs; and challenge participants to apply their talents throughout our community.”
Gazzola said it’s the goal of the chamber to help engage future community leaders and provide an avenue for participants to get involved and make a difference in the community, a goal Ticzkus agrees with.
“The reason we’re doing this isn’t so people know who we are,” Ticzkus said. “We really want to make an impact in the lives of others and in our community.”