Volunteer Spotlight: Meet Ms. Donna!

Ms. Donna has been volunteering with Club Christ for five years, which is amazing! We are so grateful for her love and faithfulness.


When and why did you begin volunteering with Club Christ?

I started volunteering at Club Christ during the summer of 2010 when I brought my church youth group to lead a Vacation Bible School. I thought helping out during the week would be a great way for my own group of high school girls to serve all year. Well, since the Center was at the Carey Arms Apartments, their parents would not let them go; I myself was hooked! I just loved the kids and loved how they got so excited to see us each week.

Tell us a little about yourself.

I have lived in Las Vegas for 30 years and have been married for 31 years. I have two wonderful daughters, Katie 26 (who lives in the Seattle area) and Christina, 24 years old. For 16 years I’ve been leading not only high schoolers at Canyon Ridge Christian Church but also a group of ladies at a Bible Study Fellowship as well. The last 12 years I have been an instructional aide for elementary kids and prior to that, I was a substitute teacher for seven years. I love working with kids who have learning disabilities and helping them find ways to learn! 

What is your favorite part of volunteering? 

The directors truly enable you to just come and serve; they have everything ready for you. What I’ve learned through volunteering is that there are so many kids in our communities who need help and God calls us not to just serve at church, but the community too. I would encourage others to volunteer at Club Christ because the kids are wonderful and you totally fall in love with them.

“If you want to lift yourself up, lift up someone else.”

-Booker T. Washington

Welcome to the Las Vegas Center

The first time I drove to the Las Vegas Center, I followed Kendra’s directions of parking on the street and not in the covered spots; “It’s just a lot safer to park on the street.” As I walked up the stairs to apartment 28, I noticed a young couple standing outside their door holding a baby and a brown paper bag covering a beer can. It was noon. “I don’t know much about this complex or about Club Christ, but I can tell this is the right place to be”, I thought to myself.


This Center is located near Texas Station and many of the families are single-parent ones. Based on information from last year, the local elementary school, where many of our students attend, was ranked 182 out of 210 elementary schools; 90% of students receive a free or reduced lunch. Last May, there was a week in which the police were in the community every single day, causing the Center to even go on lock-down.

But in the darkness, Club Christ is able to provide light to the students and to their families. One of the teens stated that she enjoys attending the Center because she feels safe and gets along with everyone. Another teen explained that she likes coming because there is so much love and help, plus she gets closer to God. In the few years we’ve been in this community, we’ve seen test scores soar, self-esteems improve, and faiths deepen. And that my friends, is exactly what our mission is!

“You are the light of the world. A city built on a hilltop cannot be hidden.”          Matthew 5:14

Four Reasons to Volunteer!

We only have 24 hours in a day, but what are we doing in those hours? Henderson Center Director Kendall Demavivas shares insight as to why YOU should consider volunteering at Club Christ!


  1. Be a Mentor

In the United States, about 30% of children grow up without a father. Studies have shown that kids who grow up in these situations have a much higher chance of being incarcerated, struggling with substance abuse, engaging in violence, or living in poverty. Becoming a mentor allows you to invest in students and their lives. You can help tell our students who God wants them to be and why that vision is so much greater than what the streets have to say.

  1. Join a Community

As a volunteer at Club Christ, you become part of the community. You will get to know leaders in the local businesses, schools, and churches, enabling you to build camaraderie with them. You will strengthen your relationships with others as you share in the small and large victories of our students!

  1. Involvement in Social Justice

We see racism and prejudice every day, and many of our students are looking to the news and social media for the answer. These issues are real. As a volunteer, you will have an opportunity to speak truth into students and teach them how to live out the gospel from a perspective of love, which always reflects Jesus. Club Christ firmly believes that Jesus is the answer to bringing an end to racism and prejudice.

  1. Develop as a Leader

As you volunteer, your heart and attitude toward serving and people who live in impoverished communities will be changed and thus, you are enabled to love others more. This refined love and attitude will translate into all areas of your life, both personal and professional.

“Alone we can do so little; together we can do so much.”

-Helen Keller 

In One Year…

It does work.

That’s the thought that crossed my mind as a third grade boy zipped through phonics activity after activity. To other onlookers, a boy identifying the word “jump” correctly would hardly be remarkable; however, for this boy it was. We had sat together six months prior. I pointed to a letter. He named the incorrect one. This young boy with a crew cut and gentle eyes had reached third grade without knowing his alphabet.


Today he does. With the help of Miss Angela and the entire volunteer staff, this young man can read. The statistics in this infographic aren’t just numbers, they are faces. He is one of the 90 kids who received 160 hours of free help this year.

Will you be part of giving more kids like him the same opportunity? Visit our Volunteer page to learn more: http://clubchrist.org.


“If human beings are perceived as potentials rather than problems, as possessing strengths instead of weaknesses, as unlimited rather than dull and unresponsive, they will thrive and grow to their capabilities.”
                 -Barbara Bush 

Five Need to Know Facts About Las Vegas

Executive Director Evan Hartsell shares five interesting details regarding Las Vegas and how they each connect to the daily work we do at Club Christ!

1. Las Vegas is ranked LAST in church congregations per capita among virtually every metropolitan area in America. http://www.reviewjournal.com/life/religion/religion-attracts-fewer-americans

I’ve heard so many times the exact opposite, that Vegas has the MOST churches per capita. Well that’s simply not true. I’ve also heard that less than 10% of people in our city have a personal relationship with Jesus. That means there is room to grow and Club Christ is happy to be an arm of the church into communities that need the gospel message. After all, “And how can they believe in the one of whom they have not heard?” – Romans 10:14.

2. UNLV is the second most ethnically diverse campus in the nation. http://lasvegassun.com/news/2015/sep/09/unlv-ranks-among-most-ethnically-diverse-schools-n/

This fact points to the reality of a city that is divided among cultural grounds yet committed to pursue knowledge and growth together. I graduated from UNLV and I grew so much from my cross-cultural friendships there. Club Christ has the honor of providing the educational foundation for hundreds of ethnically diverse students who one day will graduate from UNLV.

3. Martin Luther King Jr. visited Las Vegas and spoke at the Las Vegas Convention Center in 1964, less than a year after his famous “I Have a Dream” speech. http://lasvegassun.com/news/2012/jan/16/valley-residents-talk-struggle-out-jim-crow-south/

When he was here, MLK spoke about the importance of the Civil Rights Act because it banned major forms of segregation. He also met with local leaders who were active in the Civil Rights Movement. Club Christ carries on his legacy of unifying diverse communities  to bring about peace and reconciliation.

4. A recent federal Centers for Disease Control report found nearly half of all women living in Nevada at the time of the survey had experienced domestic violence in their lifetime. http://lasvegassun.com/news/2012/feb/07/nevada-domestic-violence-numbers/

We came up close and personal with this statistic last year; a mother of four Club Christ students stumbled out of her front door bleeding. Her ex-husband had violently attacked her while the kids were at our center. Thankfully we were there to help her. The mother and her children were accepted into a women’s shelter where they would be protected and have a chance at a fresh start, but there are too many children still living in homes where domestic violence occurs.

5. Overall, the number of nonprofits in Nevada ranked dead last in the country with per-capita figures, roughly half the national average. http://lasvegassun.com/news/2014/sep/25/southern-nevada-nonprofits-suffer-huge-funding-gap/

There is no doubt that this city is a place of need. While the strip flaunts abundance and decadence, our neighborhoods often suffer from unmet needs because of scarce non-profit services. It is challenging to say the least to be a non-profit in this city but we are proud to be the largest organization offering Christ-centered programming in low-income apartment complexes.

“In other words what frees you to live radically for others in this world is the confidence that this world is not the main world.”   (John Piper)

Welcome Interns!

Over here at Club Christ we are so thankful for our great partnership with UNLV which allows interns from the Social Work department to complete their internship with us. This semester we have two interns: Tayler and Kayla! We are excited for their season with us. Tayler and Kayla will of course complete the typical intern tasks: filing, creating folders, inputting data, and cleaning/organizing the Centers. But they will also get to be very hands-on with what happens once the Centers are open for the year! They’ll run intervention small groups, lead the students during Bible study, and engage with the teens through the newly created leadership curriculum.



Why did you decide to intern with Club Christ?

It was important for me to work in a place where I interacted with kids. In addition, Club Christ is a faith based organization and it reminds me of the non-profit my family ran, which was a draw for me as well!

What skills do you bring to the Club Christ team?

I bring organizational skills, plus a sincere love for children and a desire to help them.

If you could travel anywhere in the world, where would you go and why?

If I could travel anywhere in the world I would choose Jamaica. The draw of the slower paced island life and beautiful land is quite different than what I am used to because I was  born and raised in Las Vegas.



Why did you decide to intern with Club Christ? 

I decided to intern with Club Christ because I loved the combination of spiritual development and education. I think it’s extremely important that we help our kids understand God’s love for us as the foundation of our lives in order to succeed in various parts of life. It was very important that I took an internship in an atmosphere where I could be on mission with others who shared the same beliefs and values as I did. And this is a great place for that!

What are you hoping to learn from this experience? 

I’m hoping to learn how to work with youth in an academic environment during this experience with Club Christ. Working with at-risk youth in a residential setting for the past four years, I’ve mainly focused on behavior modification and preparing children for reunification with their families or for the transition into the next stage of their lives. Being part of a youth development program will challenge me to impact the lives of urban youth in a different way.

If you could travel anywhere in the world, where would you go and why? 

If I had the chance to travel anywhere in the world, I would travel to Jerusalem. I feel that it would be such an overwhelming experience to actually see the history of such a significant place.There is so much that I would like to do there so it’s definitely on my bucket list!

We are looking forward to all that Tayler and Kayla bring to the Club Christ team!

“A mind that is stretched by a new experience can never go back to its old dimensions.” 

-Oliver Wendell Holmes, Jr.

Goodbye Summer!

In just two weeks, the Henderson and Las Vegas Centers will reopen their doors for the new school year. We are so excited for what this year holds for our students, their families, and their communities! Before the adventures really begin, we wanted to share special moments from our summers with YOU!

Evan, Executive Director 


This summer was all about our two boys, Owen and Ethan. My wife Vanessa and I brought Owen to see the Sesame Street Live show which he absolutely loved. We spent time in our backyard cooling off with his kiddie pool when temperatures reached over 100 degrees. And with a pregnant wife at home, there have been plenty of trips to Cold Stone for a tasty treat to cool us adults down. We also had a scare with Vanessa having to spend a few weeks in the hospital because of pregnancy complications with our son Ethan. She has been on bed rest for over a month now and thanks to the generosity of family and friends we have been blessed with meals every night to help get us through this season. Again, we are reminded of the overwhelming love and care our God shows us when we are in need. So thankful for our summer and the ways we saw God at work!

Kendall, Henderson Center Director 


I was able to bring three of our Club Christ students to my church’s summer camp in Big Bear, California. It was so much fun taking them to the mountains and getting away from everyday life in order to encounter God and grow in our faith together. Those three students are now attending church weekly and actively participating in youth events!

Angela, Las Vegas Center Director 


This was a wonderful summer for me, with lots of changes! I officially joined the Club Christ staff (yay!) and moved into a house with three of my friends. I also traveled to San Diego and Denver,  BUT I think one of the coolest parts of my summer was going to Disneyland for the first time ever earlier this month! I went with Maryann, who is basically a Disney pro, which was helpful as she navigated us through the parks. My top three favorite attractions were Toy Story Midway Mania, Jungle Cruise, and Mickey’s Magical Map show. I had a great time and I hope to go back sometime soon!

Kendra, Program Director 


We kicked off our summer by celebrating our anniversary in Utah near Kanab. Then on July 6, we added another child to our home by welcoming a foster daughter we call Baby K. She is the newborn sister of our other foster child, Miss P. Our son Etsen has added a slew of signs to his repertoire and has made dinosaur his favorite word. We plan to close out the summer with a camping trip to Arizona.

Next on the Club Christ blog, we will be introducing our new UNLV interns, Kayla and Tayler!