The 2015 Points of Light Conference on Volunteering and Service, providing the singular opportunity for thousands to come together to shape the future of volunteerism, will be held October 19-21 in Houston, Texas at the George R. Brown Convention Center. On Tuesday, Oct. 20, the Conference will offer four faith-based workshops to provide participants the opportunity to discuss the integration of service and faith.
Attendees will engage in dialogue with faith and community leaders to learn how congregations are putting their faith into action in partnership with their communities to affect change. “Leaders from the nonprofit, corporate and civic sectors will all be at the Conference and in these workshops who care about the future of volunteer service,” says Delores Morton, President, Points of Light Programs. “Join us as we unite in service to discover and use our time, talent, voice and money to build strong, vibrant communities around the world.”
Faith Workshops – Tuesday, Oct. 20
1. The Faith Community’s Role in the Neighborhood: Churches and other faith-based organizations have a long history of involvement in working with their neighborhoods. In many areas where resources are scarce, churches and other faith-based organizations may be one of only a few social institutions capable of galvanizing a community into action and providing a place for communal programs to take place. We will learn from churches and faith-based organizations on how they have managed to address and meet the needs of their neighbors.
2. Congregation and Community Collaboration: Learn about joint initiatives between community organizations and congregations that are designed to spur congregations toward greater community service, innovation, and community involvement. We will identify initiatives targeted at church members and attendees, inviting them to pioneer community outreach and partnerships in their communities.
3. Faith, Poverty and the Role of Service: In 2012, there were 49.7 million Americans grappling with the economic and social hardships of living below the poverty line, including 13.4 million children. The United States is one of the world’s most religiously diverse nations, and it is often through its religious organizations that the impoverished find help and sustenance. This forum on faith, poverty and service will explore the ways in which institutions of faith – and their leaders – provide solutions that address poverty and need. We have gathered diverse representatives of the Christian, Islamic, and Jewish communities who serve through inspiration and will share how their organizations work to meet the needs of the poor.
- Kirbyjon Caldwell, Senior Pastor, Windsor Village United Methodist Church
- Martin B. Cominsky, President and CEO, Interfaith Ministries for Greater Houston
- Rev. Dr. R. B. Holmes, Jr., Pastor, Bethel Missionary Baptists Church
- Paul Loeb, author, “Soul of a Citizen” and “The Impossible Will Take a Little While”
- Joel Osteen, Sr. Pastor Lakewood Church
- Rev. Elder Dr. Nancy Wilson, Global Moderator, Metropolitan Community Churches
4. The Care and Feeding of Faith-Motivated Volunteers: Many people serve through their faith communities, but tapping into those communities can be tough! Join us to learn to speak in terms that connect with faith-motivated volunteers and deepen their commitment to serve… inside or outside the church. Among the challenges faced by leaders of faith motivating volunteers is the need to keep them encouraged, to help them make connections between the work they are doing and the real difference they are making in the lives of people.
Through these four workshops, the 2015 Conference will examine how the next generation of citizens is creating new pathways for direct action and unleashing their solutions with new levels of speed and scale. “As participants engage in the process and dialogues, they will unearth concrete strategies for how to help their communities,” says Morton. “This will be a chance to learn from, share with and get inspired by one another – while working together to increase the number of volunteers in the world.”
The 2015 Conference marks Points of Light’s 25th anniversary and will include some of the most recognized names in leadership, entertainment and philanthropy, all joining attendees to celebrate volunteering and service and highlight the impact of Points of Light, which was established by President George H. W. Bush. There will be a wide range of workshops, forums, hands-on service opportunities and special events at the Conference, including a Business Track and the opportunity to be a part of Read Across the Globe, a historic reading event on Monday, Oct. 19 aiming to break a world record and raise awareness of the worldwide literacy crisis.
Take advantage of the free registration to attend the Faith, Poverty and the Role of Service Forum and register with promo code FaithForum15. To enjoy all Faith Day workshops and sessions at a $125 discounted rate, register with promo code Faithday2015. Please note that only one code can be used per registration.
Points of Light – the world’s largest organization dedicated to volunteer service – mobilizes millions of people to take action that is changing the world. For more information, go to www.pointsoflight.org.