Children and parents prepare for the school year
J.D. Belcher's story and the creation of
his feature length film
Our newest hire for
Parents as Teachers
Ready for School!
How will my child handle going to school for the first time? How will I, as a parent, handle my child going to school? Will he/she be okay? What about the bus ride?
The Community Crossing Parents as Teachers partnered with Coalfield Cap Headstart to provide a fun filled afternoon sharing information, activities and food all related to transitioning to school. The Summerdean Church of the Brethren out of Roanoke, VA graciously donated an I Can Read book and backpacks for our Preschool and Kindergarten children that were filled with supplies and activities to encourage learning at home as well as at school. The children participated in activity learning stations related to letters, numbers, shapes with Pete The Cat theme. The parents gathered together to share concerns, worries and ideas as to how to best help their children, and themselves deal with the transition to school. Moms who have “been there”, moms just beginning the journey, PAT staff and Headstart staff discussed and shared together in a relaxed atmosphere. Group Connection opportunities like this are a perfect complement to the one on one home visitation monthly visits from their Parent Educator.
Promotes Home Visitation Programs
"Not everyone knows that I grew up one generation and one holler
removed from poverty.:
Read Full NY Times Article
Caitlyn Hardy has joined The Community Crossing as a Parent Educator for the Parents as Teachers’ program. She brings with her a ray of sunshine wherever she goes and we are excited for her to join our team!
United 55 Strong in Prayer
On the state Capitol Steps for Awaken The Dawn in Charleston WV, September 27-29. There will be a special unity gathering of the church from evey West Virginia county. As a precursor to that event there has been a prayer time in each county of WV. The Mission was excited to be a part of the McDowell County event on Sunday, August 26th.
Story Hour Year End Party
The story hour staff of the library and many volunteers put on a party for all the families who attended during the summer.
It was loads of fun for the kids who
played musical chairs, limbo stick,
and other games. Because of donations
from a very generous church. some of
the children were able to win bikes!
As always we are thankful for McDowell Public Library and how they continue to
bring people and families together.
Be sure to mark your calendar for September 7, 2018 to see Cornered: A Fighter's Story at Marquee Cinema in Welch!
“This is a story of three fighters combating poverty with the guidance of their trainer, and the drive to become more than just another negative headline.” See the official trailer here.
Recently we had lunch with the documentary filmmaker J.D. Belcher, and had the opportunity to learn how artistic and technical skills, coupled with sound business principles, have resulted in the successful enterprise known as JJN Multimedia. His passion is to use his skills for social impact, and tell the stories of McDowell County.
How does a young man from McDowell County go from coal miner to documentary film maker? On his Facebook page he describes his journey as “I failed school, sold shoes, made fries, zoned shelves, wired homes, mined coal, and now make films.” In the cultivation of his passion for filmmaking, he has developed an astonishing combination of skills to be a successful entrepreneur in this region. He is a visionary, innovator, and integrator – communicating all that is right about our County.
Trust in the communicator
One theme that became very clear to us is the trust that J.D. earns from everyone he encounters. Filming, and storytelling, puts the subject in a potentially vulnerable position. Yet trust is the key to J.D.'s ability to closely connect with the individuals he films – whether a bride and groom, boxer, community leader, businessman, or student. This trust enables J.D. to capture stunning vignettes and with his outstanding skill in editing, filmography and rapid turnaround, he has accumulated a LOT of happy customers, and profoundly inspires everyone who sees his work. His first venture Unscripted Memories grew exponentially in the first year, and J.D.'s work then expanded with the launch JJN Multimedia. In 2016 he self-funded and produced a series called “Motivate McDowell” – a moving collection of 10 stories of those who love their home and live to make a difference here. Countless thousands of shares and views reflect the enthusiastic response to J.D.’s talent and labor of love. He believes that the success of his business is related directly to adhering to his company values "Integrity, Sustainability, and Accountability."
With over 500 films to his credit, he is surprisingly self-effacing. “I made a lot of awful stuff, and got a taste for what is good.” With a wide grin he told us while still working in the mine in 2012 he made his first film of an explosion. Since those early days experimenting with film making, he said he always wanted to do a full-length feature on McDowell County.
This idea became a reality when J.D. began filming the Black Diamond Boxing Club at the Community Crossing. Self-funding this effort, he painstakingly filmed more than 60 hours of footage over an 18 month period following the stories of three athletes in the boxing club. The documentary has been entered into several film festivals throughout the next year, and J.D. is hoping it will be selected for a couple!
We were honored to be invited to see the private screening and guarantee you will be glad you went to see the upcoming showings in September!
SEP 7 Fri 7 PM Marquee Cinemas McDowell 3, Welch
SEP 15 Sat 7 PM The Raleigh Playhouse and Theatre, Beckley
SEP 23 Sun 7 PM The Riff Raff Arts Collective, Princeton
As if this film debut isn't exciting enough, J.D. is already onto his next big thing. He is very excited about his next venture called Student Pack that was just launched August 28th! See the Facebook page and the new website jointhefamily.info. This program was created to give students a voice through designing their own brand, learning about journalism, making films, producing podcasts, and developing key entrepreneurial skills. The vision is to build a model that can be replicated anywhere.
What’s next for J.D.? We can't wait to find out!