December 12, 2013
Reed Elementary School first-grade students Sofia Vega, left, and Lexus Guia react to the announcement that Faith Assembly Church will give away a bicycle to every student at Reed on Sunday. Faith Assembly staff members made the announcement to Reed students during lunch periods on Thursday.
Dec. 12, 2013—Members of Faith Assembly Church surprised Reed Elementary School on Thursday with the announcement that the church—together with Academy Sports and Outdoors—will donate a bicycle to every student at the school for the holiday season.
The church will give away 955 bicycles—as well as tricycles, wagons and other accommodations for students with special needs—during its two services on Sunday, Dec. 15.
Faith Assembly, which adopted Reed through the Partners in Education (PIE) Adopt-a-School program in 2010, chose the bicycle donation as a way to create an unforgettable Christmas gift for the families of Reed Elementary School.
“It is our desire to be woven into the fabric of this community and live life with people right where they are. With that in mind, we decided to come alongside local organizations that are already proven winners and work in cooperation with them,” said Jason Taylor, lead pastor of Faith Assembly. “We realize that more can be accomplished when we work in cooperation rather than in competition. This is one of the most exciting times we have ever been a part of.”
Reed staff and students were equally excited when they received word of the donation during their lunch periods on Thursday, when Faith Assembly members rode into the cafeteria on bicycles to the backdrop of Christmas music.
“Honestly, I was speechless,” said Reed principal Kandy Bond. “I’ve never experienced anything like this. This donation will directly affect every child in this building. The staff feels the impact of it too, and we’re overwhelmed.”
Faith Assembly staff members displayed some of the new bicycles that will be given away to students at Reed Elementary School. Pictured, from left, are Roger Nelmes, Cypress campus pastor; Jason Taylor, lead pastor; Trey Wilborn, children’s pastor; Raymond Rice, pastor of assimilation; Nolan McLaughlin, student pastor; and Leah Carreon, communications director.
Members of Faith Assembly are frequent contributors to the success and well-being of students at Reed, volunteering in the Cy-Hope Backpack Buddy program and mentoring program, serving on Curriculum Night, supporting STAAR success and performing landscape beautification on the campus.
Faith Assembly communications director Leah Carreon said the bicycle giveaway began as a “what if” idea during a staff meeting years ago. Due to generous discounts from partner Academy Sports and Outdoors, the church was able to purchase the bicycles in time for the 2013 holiday season.
“We thought about how awesome it would be for every one of your friends to get a bike for Christmas. This season is a different experience for kids than it is for adults,” Carreon said. “We love our community and want to create an environment for the children of this community to learn what it means to love life as well.”
Semi trucks filled with bicycles will unload the goods at the church on Friday, where church staff members and other CFISD students will work to assemble the bicycles on Friday and Saturday to have them ready for Sunday’s services.
“To be a part of these kids’ Christmas experience and their school experience—this is huge for us,” Carreon said.
Reed first-grade student Sophia Clarkson shows excitement upon learning she will receive a free bicycle through the Faith Assembly Church bike giveaway.
Reed first-grade students Woody Nguyen and Brizeyda Barroso react to the free bicycles announcement.
As third-grade student Alonso Barron looks on, Faith Assembly student pastor Nolan McLaughlin rides a bicycle through the Reed Elementary School cafeteria on Thursday to generate excitement about the bike giveaway.
Faith Assembly children’s pastor Trey Wilborn gets the Reed students excited about the bike giveaway during lunch periods on Thursday.
Reed third-grade student Derell Nelson participates in a bicycle race in the cafeteria prior to the bike giveaway announcement on Thursday.
Reed third-grade students Zoe Moore and Dagoberto Galera celebrate the Faith Assembly bike giveaway on Thursday.
Faith Assembly communications director Leah Carreon explains to Reed students how they can receive their free bicycles on Sunday.