Thrive at Cumberland

We help the kids in our community learn the things that they will need to THRIVE in the world.

Quick facts…

  • The Thrive program is a ministry of the Cumberland church here in Dyersburg. We help the children and youth of our community learn the things that they will need to be successful in life but are often missed at school or at home.
  • Thrive is for ages Pre-K (age 4) through 12 grade.
  • Thrive begins on August 16th and continues each Wednesday from 6PM to 7:30 PM
  • You do not have to be a member of the Cumberland Presbyterian Church to participate.
  • There is no cost to participate in Cumberland Thrive
  • Click Here to skip directly to registration or read the information below.

So, What is Thrive at Cumberland All About?

Did you know that most parents look at the state of the world today and worry about the opportunities that their children will have to be successful in their future lives? What we do is provide hands-on instruction for the children and youth of our community to learn all the important and practical life skills that they may not be getting at home or school or anywhere else, so that they will be equipped to not just succeed, but Thrive in an uncertain and rapidly changing world. And, it doesn’t cost these kids or their families a dime.

Ok, I'm Listening....Tell Me More!

We have listened to parents, educators, business leaders, mental health professionals, and community leaders about the struggles of the young people in our community from birth to working adulthood, and do you know what we heard? There are many types of knowledge and skills that they will need to thrive in their adult lives and not every kid has the same access to these skills. We are not just talking about academic knowledge. These are insights and practices that your kids will need that are

outside of the scope of your kid’s schools and often not taught in their homes.

 Can you imagine a kid that made straight A’s all through high school, got a college degree or even excellent vocational training, and in the interview for a dream job, can’t make eye contact with the interviewer? Or, he /she becomes so nervous they just can’t even respond to the questions. Perhaps they didn’t know how to dress for the occasion. Maybe they use words or even body language that causes the interviewer to dismiss them as a viable candidate. How devastating would that be? And all because somewhere along the line, the folks that they were in competition with for this job, learned how to shake a hand, control the butterflies, learned table manners, learned how to tie a tie, learned how to present themselves with confidence in a conversation all while our sad friend just didn’t really ever come across those opportunities. We are working with young people to give them the tools that they need to Thrive in just about any situation that they might find themselves in out there in the world

ok, but my kid can already make eye contact and shake hands, that is just basics stuff everyone should know...

We are so glad that your kids have these skills! No doubt, they learned them at home from parents that have those skills and believe that they are important. What we are finding by listening to parents, teachers, employers, and others in the community, is that for some reason our culture has taken for granted many social and practical skills that used to be commonplace. Employers are having a hard time finding folks who have the kind of skills that your kid has. Somewhere, somehow, many folks in our community have not been given opportunity to intentionally learn skills that others believe should be commonplace.

All one has to do is talk to a teacher these days to hear that many students have difficulties with their social interactions. Many students also struggle with their emotions. They have feelings that are overwhelming and they are ill-equipped to respond favorably to situations where their feelings might get the best of them. There's also notions like grit or "stick -to- it-ness" that many folks have not developed. These deficiencies are usually covered for while kids are in school. Eventually, however, these kids become adults out in a world that does not provide accommodations for these situations and they find it more difficult to thrive. Certainly, there are many more skills and competencies that can help determine our level of success and happiness in life… And not every kid it's the same education in the skills and competencies. We think that means that the kids that don't have the opportunity for that kind of instruction at home or at school will be at a disadvantage out in the world. We want to do something about that.

So what are they going to learn about then?

While this list is certainly not exhaustive (we are adding to it all the time) , it gives you an idea of the things that we would like to help develop in your kids!

  • Taking Care of What You’ve Got
  • Smoking/Grilling
  • Home Economics type things (i.e. cooking, domestic chores, taking care of clothes)
  • Car/Bike Maintenance
  • Creation Care
  • Home Maintenance
  • Working Well W/ Others
  • Team building/work
  • Relational Problem Solving
  • Seeing Value in others
  • Work Ethic
  • Responding Positively to guidance
  • Presenting yourself well
  • Setting long-range goals
  • Interview skills
  • Resume writing
  • Time management skills
  • Communication skills
  • Active listening
  • How to tactfully disagree
  • De-escalation skills
  • How to do “Personal Best” and how to grow our "Personal Best"
  • Presenting yourself well - how other perceive you
  • Making friends and acquaintances
  • Having and respecting personal boundaries
  • Quality (honorable) character traits
  • Understanding Feelings/Coping Skills
  • Self control/Delayed gratification
  • Making good choices
  • Manners/Etiquette
  • Time management
  • Healthy Bodies
  • Financial management
  • Internet/Social Media safety

Do you want your child to possess skills that will help them to be self-reliant as they move toward and into adulthood?  Learning basic maintenance skills and how to prepare food in the kitchen (or outdoors on the grill!) are some of the opportunities they’ll have at Thrive.

Do you want your young person to excel in school, work, and team settings?  We do too!  Which is why at Thrive they will learn active listening skills, team building skills, and relational problem solving skills.

Do you want to develop work ethic and grit in your child?  We believe that those traits can be important predictors of success.  So at Thrive we will learn together to set long-term goals (and make practical steps toward reaching them!), establish time management skills, practice making good choices and establish good communication skills.

Do you want your child to learn to “put their best foot forward"? We can help with that by teaching basic etiquette and manners; helping students to be responsible and safe social media/internet users; learning financial management skills; and offering age-appropriate hygiene and body care for all ages.  

How do you go about teaching these things?

The children and youth who participate in Thrive at Cumberland each week will receive a time of fellowship and study in the Christian faith and a special curriculum of practical training in life skills. Each set of life skills will culminate in some practical experience where the kids will get to practice their new skills.

For example, after learning about table manners and how to behave at social events, the kids will be treated to a fine dining experience where they can practice what they have learned!

So the Thrive program has a component of biblical study?

Absolutely! Cumberland is a Christian community of faith (some folks say church instead of community of faith.) Remember how we said earlier that the "Thrive program seeks to help the children and youth of our community learn the things that they will need to be successful in life but are often missed at school or at home?" We believe that many of the children and youth in our community do not get to hear how much God loves them. These families don't get to learn that there may be better ways or relating to one another than what they have been taught by a harsh world. The Love of Jesus teaches us some better ways to live! We want to share that with the community also!

What does it cost to participate?

The children and youth ministry of the Cumberland church is supported by the generous donations by the members of the church. While we may have a fundraiser from time to time to help cover the cost of events and donations are always accepted, we do not charge families to participate in Thrive at Cumberland.

As we put together programming to help the kids of our community to have the skills that they need to thrive in adulthood, we will focus a great deal on commitment. We believe that being committed is not only our call as people of faith, but is also a positive character trait appreciated by teachers, coaches, and employers alike. In the church, we use the language of "covenant" to talk about commitment. "Covenant" is an old timey word that means something like "holy promise." We are making a covenant with the kids and families that participate in Thrive. We promise to commit a great deal of resources into giving your kids opportunities. And while we do not charge anything from the families who participate, we do ask that these kids and their families make a covenant to be committed to the program.

We strongly encourage your commitment as you register your student; we commit to being good stewards of your children by taking very seriously our call to disciple them and our commitment to offer practical-living skills; won't you join us in being good stewards by choosing to have them here each Wednesday from 6-7:30!

Do we have to be members of the Cumberland church to participate?

Not at all! We are providing arrive at Cumberland for the benefit of the community. While you don't have to be a member and there is no charge to join Thrive, there are a few housekeeping things that we should probably mention.

We do have concerns about our capacity to serve our community. For our first semester ,starting August 16, 2023, we are thinking that we will be able to accommodate around 100 kids in the program. You can imagine that with all the expense of providing activities and trips for these kids free of charge we do have to consider our reasonable limits to resources. The children and youth that have been participating in the life of our church thus far will be given first opportunity for registration. After that, it is a free-for-all! We will take all registrations first come first serve. If we end up with just a little over our 100 kid capacity, we will just figure out how to accommodate the extras. If we end up with a great deal more than the hundred kids we are prepared to serve, then we will start a waiting list and figure out how can get them involved as soon as possible. So, if you are interested, please register now!!!

ok! How do I get my kids registered?

We think it is a great that you are interested in taking advantage of our program and we so look forward to getting to know your children and youth! To register, just click the link below and fill out the form. We will follow up soon with the preferred contact that you provide to us and let you know what comes next for our beginning time of August 16, 2023.