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Keeping the Faith: What it Means to Join SBSK’s Team

Our wonderful Oak Hill Site Coordinator, Devin Miranda, took the time to tell us about her role at Side by Side Kids and her own relationship with Christ.

When did you begin following Christ?

My parents shared who God was with me at a young age, and I have believed in Him as long as I can remember, but high school was when I truly began to follow Christ. My life has truly been transformed! I think for so many people, there are seasons of push and pull with our relationship with God, and thankfully, His love and dedication towards us is not determinant of the love and dedication we give Him. I’m thankful that He is a God of great love and patience, which is why I think Side by Side Kids is so important. We teach our kids that there is a God who loves them and who is patient with them when they make mistakes. They learn that God wants the best for them in life and is there for them. I’ve seen the difference that affirmation has made in the lives of our students and their families.

Why did you want to work at SBSK?

I graduated college with a degree in Political Science because I dreamed of working as a legislative aide in D.C. However, I began to feel God pulling me in a very different direction. After a lot of prayer and guidance from mentors in my church, I saw a Site Coordinator position open for Side by Side Kids. Because I went to school in an underserved area of my community as a child, I knew the importance of empowerment and mentorship and the effect it had on my upbringing. Most importantly, I knew the life-giving encouragement that The Gospel gives us. Side by Side Kids is a non-profit that hits on each of these formative pillars.

For me, the question ended up not being “why” but “why not?” Why would I not want to serve a ministry that glorifies and serves God and the community in such an impactful way? Although it’s not the initial path I set for myself, it certainly emphasizes what Proverbs 16:9 says: “The heart of man plans his way, but the LORD establishes his steps.”

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Why do you think it’s important for kids to develop these servant leadership skills?

1 Timothy 4:12 says: “Do not let them look down on you because you are young. But set an example to the believers in speech, in conduct, in love, in faith, and in purity”. When you continuously water the seeds of leadership and service in a child, it doesn’t just give them confidence in their God-given gifts to develop a heart of service, it creates a light that spreads to others. Children offer a perspective that adults sometimes don’t see.There’s something powerful and beautiful in a child’s courageous desire to lead change in our society. To our organization, it is powerful knowing that our kids will use the skills they are learning to serve their communities and love each other they way Jesus does. Knowing that I have the privilege and honor to help mold these students, and partner with God in raising them up as servant leaders is the best feeling.

What is something valuable you have learned?

Words and time matter. We all desire to be known, and we are meant to live a life of community. Side by Side Kids is a community. For example,Tonya Moore, our Afterschool Program Coordinator, is like the mom on our team. She takes time to check in with me and see how I am doing. My students appreciate when I take time to come in and help them with homework, or play with them during rec time.

My students have taught me that when you truly invest in one-on-one time, genuine trust is built and authentic relationships form. Because of my experiences with our kids, I’ve learned to be more intentional in relationships with friends and acquaintances and it has made all the difference.

Of every goal we have set as a ministry, one of the greatest fruits I’ve witnessed is the encouragement the kids feel, and the discipleship they have demonstrated to their families because of God’s work through Side by Side Kids.

Join Devin in serving our Side by Side Kids students by getting involved with Side by Side Kids! Check out our Job Openings to learn more about our open positions.