Thu, Jun

Bethany Baptist Church of West Los Angeles promotes education at annual Thanksgiving Giveaway

Families received items for Thanksgiving dinner and information about Baldwin Bethany CDC’s education programs. Photos by Jason Lewis


The Baldwin Bethany CDC promotes their STEM and after school programs.

Baldwin Bethany CDC’s Launch Academy is designed to make science fun. 

By Tracey Edwards

The Bethany Baptist Church of West Los Angeles, located in Crenshaw Manor, and the Baldwin Bethany Community Development Corporation (CDC) used their Thanksgiving giveaway to inform the community about their educational programs.  

Rod Miles, executive director of the Baldwin Bethany CDC, felt that they could brighten community members’ holidays while showing local residents what the church has to offer.

“People can see the church in a different light,” he said.  “We are really trying to make ourselves known in the community besides being just a religious organization.”

Children and their families from Coliseum Elementary School, Hillcrest Elementary School, Baldwin Hills Elementary School, and Audubon Middle School were invited.  

Baldwin Bethany CDC partnered with UCLA Center X, which is an organization that prepares and supports K-12 teachers and administrators committed to social justice, instructional excellence, and the integration of research in urban schools, to create the Launch Academy, which is a six-week STEM (science, technology, engineering, math) summer program.  

“We know that’s where the jobs are in the 21st century,” Miles said.  “We’re trying to prepare our students and our community for that marketplace.”

A program of this nature is important because many schools do not have the time to focus solely on STEM subjects.  

Baldwin Bethany CDC is expanding their educational programs.  In the near future, they will open an after school program, an early bird literacy program, and a parent education program.

“Education is important to the church because without education, there is no growth,” said Michelle Washington, education program coordinator at the Baldwin Bethany CDC.  “Education is a part of everything that we do.  You cannot get through this world without knowing something.  Education is going to be what gets us to that next level.”

Washington encourages parents to enroll their children as early as possible into the Launch Academy because there is limited space.  Last year there was a lengthy waiting list.  

Bethany Baptist Church of West L.A. is located at 4115 W. Martin Luther King Jr. Blvd.  Contact them at (323) 296-7223, or visit their website at www.bethanywla.com.

Contributions for the community giveaway were provided by Council District 10 Herb Wesson, 54th District Assembly member Sebastian Ridley-Thomas, LAWA (Los Angeles World Airport), Bright Star, UCLA Science Project and members of the Bethany Baptist Church of West Los Angeles.


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