social change competition



Park Street Church's Social Change Competition was recently featured in the e-newsletter, Postings, a publication of Catalyst Services. Download a PDF of the newsletter here!



In 2009 at the Bicentennial of Park Street Church, The Social Change Competition was launched, to catalyze mission movements amongst students in the New England region to bring the whole gospel—in word and deed—right into the very heart of global suffering and poverty. Our desire in this competition was to honor those who have given generously and sacrificially to our church and to our missions program by unleashing a new engagement of students in missions. The following projects are the winners of the grants that were chosen out of 50 submitted proposals.





Leo Iwai & Hyewon Lee
Grant Award of $4,173


The Jesus View Finder project aimed to increase the church community’s involvement and awareness of global conditions through pictures of how God has used Park Street Church missionaries to spread the good news of his kingdom. A showcase of pictures and written testimonies was displayed at the Jesus Viewfinder Photo Exhibition during the annual missions conference. The exhibition displayed a beautiful and realistic portrayal of missions. The photographs displayed at the exhibit were auctioned off with the proceeds going to benefit continued mission work. The Jesus View Finder Project has been a model for other churches to involve the congregation through the arts. The project was recently replicated at All Souls Church in London.



Napitchaya P, Zanny P, and Raymond Y
Grant Award of $40,000


The Nawng E Hku Child Development Center aims to improve the long-term well-being of underprivileged children in the Nawng E Hku village in Myanmar through holistic development. Improving access to education for the most economically marginalized children, the Center integrates child development into church, school, and community programs. This helps provide students with inspirational mediums to better understand the gospel of Jesus Christ and its role in their lives. Team Members Napitchaya and Raymond were able to visit Myanmar at separate times in 2010 and 2011. Raymond, who serves on our missions board, was able to do training for the community leaders in sustainable planning, grant accountability practices, and helped the community restructure the project goals. The community decided the best use of funds was to create sustainable farming connected to the community center that could be the ongoing source of funding for their work. Due to continued civil unrest in the province the project timeline has been slowed. Thus far approximately 60% of the grant has been dispensed.



Courtney Rountree, Karibu Nyaggah, Jeanette Cajide,
Sunkyo Im, Ying Sun & Hannah Lantos
Grant Award of $25,000


Sinapis’ mission is to empower aspiring entrepreneurs in the developing world with innovative, scalable business ideas by providing them with a rigorous, Christ-centered business education, world-class consulting and mentoring services and access to seed capital. Through these means, Sinapis strives to create ethical business leaders, sustainable employment and an improved quality of life for many that we may glorify God in service of His people. With the help of Park Street Church's funding, Courtney Rountree and Karibu Nyaggah moved to Nairobi in August 2010 to launch operations on the ground. Sinapis Group has officially launched and is training entrepreneurs as well as dispensing loans to help them grow their businesses. David Rix, vice chair of the Park Street Church Missions Committee and Jake Rothman, a youth leader at Park Street Church, were judges and contributors in their most recent entrepreneurship contest. Pleased with the fruit of their work, Park Street Church continues its involvement in Sinapis and has agreed to continue to support the organization this year in the amount of $5000 to help them launch their second training cohort in June 2012.



Arthur C, Carolee D. E, Emily G, Ruth G, Kristen G, Leila H, Sasha J, Erin A J, Jeremy K, John K, Ara K, Daniel K, Matt M, Roxanna M, Alicia P, Bill P, David S, Amy Y. T, Natalie W, Paul Y & Joan Z
Grant Award of $40,000


The Global Medical Education Project aims to address global health needs by catalyzing a movement of international colleagues dedicated to engage the human condition as followers of Jesus Christ. The project intentionally involves three global sites (Boston, MA; Vellore, India; Middle East) which each present a particular opportunity to contribute to our goal. The project brings international colleagues together through the common language of biomedicine, with an aim to consider God’s kingdom as a paradigm for the practice of medicine. Vellore, India: A team of 10 students from Boston University School of Medicine, Tufts School of Medicine and Tufts School of Dental Medicine traveled to Vellore, India where they worked rotations at the Christian Medical College while in community with locals and internationals. In 2011 we lost a key faculty contact to a three-year sabbatical. Students from Tufts continue to do rotations at CMC apart from the GMEP. Middle East: A team of five students from Boston University School of Medicine traveled to a Middle Eastern country for the fourth iteration of teaching a public health course to local medical students. In 2011 the Arab Spring happened. We've been able to maintain contact with students via email and facebook. We’ve decided to focus resources in this country. A potential team is forming to teach a problem based learning course in May 2012.


Boston, MA: Members of both the India and Middle East teams have had opportunities to share their experiences with peers, professors and administrators at their respective institutions in student interest group meetings on campus, campus newsletters, and even research meetings. One manuscript “Behavior, Knowledge, and Attitudes Towards Khat Among Yemeni Medical Students & Effects of a Seminar” was recently published in the journal Substance Abuse. A second “Assessment of Peer Teaching Model in Yemen” is in submission to a medical education journal. As students progress through their medical education, their experiences stay with them and shapes to their approach to medicine and career choices.





Michael Silvestri, Kellie Courtney, Matthew Gibbons, Ken Moore, Loyal Egan, Chris Jensen, Abioloa Laniyonu, Loren Raiford, Tim Baker, Cort Van Ostran, Emily Henderson & Natalie So
Grant Award of $27,950


For the past 5 years a group of students from schools in Boston have travelled to one of the largest cities on the African continent—Tshwane, South Africa. They spent their days working in a township called Mamelodi which is inhabited by a million black South Africans, overwhelmed by the need around them. The Social Change Competition was an opportunity for a new way of transforming this community.

Their leader Pat McLeod reflected that “for two years we had been coming to South Africa, sharing our faith, working in orphanages and AIDs clinics, scouting out the land and seeing if their might be some skills or technology that we could design to bring relief or uplift to the people living in poverty. But as smart as these kids were, none of them really had any skills yet, they were pretty young and inexperienced and this proved to be a little idealistic. But as we sat there sipping coffee we realized, “This is something that we can help with. We have 25 students that we can bring here between school semesters in January and June who even though they don’t have a lot of work experience yet, they have proved that they can do one thing better than almost anyone else in the world, and it just happens to be what the kids in Mamelodi most need to escape the cycle of poverty and crime. They know how to pass an exam that gets them into some of the best colleges in the world. There is one other thing that they can do—for better or worse our obnoxious Americans are still fairly magnetic to South African students (they are intrigued by them and want to hang out with them). And while the white South African college students, may not go on their own, into the township they will come along with us. And so three years ago we came back from South Africa with a fresh vision for an important work that could be done there by college students in New England as a recipient of a $28,000 grant from Park Street Social Change Competition.”

The Mamelodi Initiative was established and that summer a Christ-centered tutoring program in partnership with Park Street Church, the university of Pretoria, the US embassy, Mamelodi high schools, Campus Crusade for Christ and, South African pastors and churches.Hundreds of students have been involved in the program, scores of students have come to Christ, even some of the South African tutors and volunteers have come to know the Lord through the program. God continues to raise up a movement of people who are caring for orphans in Mamelodi, helping to curtail the spread of AIDS, lifting children out of poverty, bringing about racial reconciliation in the largest city in Africa, spreading the gospel and building the church in South Africa. Together we have established what appears to be a sustainable tutoring program on a college campus in Mamelodi right across the street from one of the largest fastest growing squatters villages in Sub-Saharan Africa—houses that have been put together with scrap pieces of wood, metal, plastic and no plumbing or electricity. Click Here to read their reflections on Mamelodi.



Joe Cheslock, Sean Matthews, Abigail McNamara, Karen Smith, Laura Yegge, Erica Santuccio & Jessica Dick
Grant Award of $1500


UNH Basic Injustice created awareness and engagement at the University of New Hampshire community regarding the lack of fulfillment of basic needs throughout our world, challenging them to see the problems at hand, where God fits in, and how they can help. They highlighted simple needs such as secure shelter and educational resources that are not being met in target areas. The community was challenged to engage in three different organizations to help provide a foundation of sustainability within Uganda and Haiti: Come Let’s Dance, ChildVoice International, and Partners in Development. Two of the team members were sent to Uganda during summer 2010, and are now sharing their experiences at campus events. “Muzugu” a documentary by Shane Gilmore, Director of Come Let’s Dance will be shown over the fall semester. A project has been launched to partner with UNH athletics to benefit ChildVoice International by selling beaded jewelry made by Ugandan women in UNH colors.


Tiffany Yuh, Bianca Yuh & Daniel Jimenez
Grant award of $10,000


By integrating alternative youth activities with income-generation, Light of Hope addressed major challenges that the community of Lusaka, Zambia faces. Funding was used to employ youth in making and selling interlocking stabilized soil blocks. This provided important skill training and employment for the youth in the community, while providing a great venue for ministry to address challenges faced by the youth in Lusaka. Team members spent seven weeks working alongside the leaders and youth at the Light of Hope compound in Lusaka, particularly through providing engineering and financial management training. At the time of the team’s departure from Zambia, they are confident in the project’s progress. Block production is upwards of 240 blocks per day and construction of a sample storage shed is underway. Financial and management models have been created and are being utilized, and proper training for financial analyses and adjustments has been implemented. View the report of their work in Lusaka.


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