I Care Birmingham represents the collective efforts of the community of faith, corporate, and government to aid in the recovery and restoration of the Birmingham region after the widespread devastation caused by the storms on April 27, 2011. We believe that a community is not recovered until every family is stabilized. Join us in helping families be a part of our I Care Birmingham Initiative.

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Ready Day One Back to School Initiative









Assisting Families for Student Success on Day One


A Case for Action

Each year in our community many students do not show up to begin school on the first day. In fact, there are many families for a sundry of reasons that do not send their children to school until the Tuesday after Labor Day. As a result, students begin the school year significantly behind the majority of their classmates in their courses of study. They also find themselves significantly behind in assimilating into the classroom culture. The first two weeks of school are essential for teachers to build rapport with the students as he/she establishes rules and expectations that will define the culture.

There is also an impact on the school system in the day to day operations and in the funding of the school system. Like most large organizations, the logistics of personnel and resources is a monumental task. Because of late enrollments, a process that usually takes two to three weeks to stabilize now takes five to six weeks. This often times delays the norming of the classroom and school setting, indirectly impacting teachers beginning direct instruction and subsequently student achievement.

Last but not least, it impacts the funding of our school systems. Schools are funded based upon attendance. The state determines a systems enrollment for the school year based upon their average daily attendance from the first few weeks of school. At a time when educational funding continues to be significantly cut, we cannot afford to underfund our schools because our students are not ready on day one of the school year.

A Community Response

READY DAY ONE INITIATIVE is an essential community response to the challenges facing our families and schools as we prepare our children for success in the coming school year. In partnership with the Birmingham City Schools Superintendent Craig Witherspoon, Mission Alabama is building bridges between corporations, churches, community based organizations, public entities and families to ensure that our children are ready for school on day one of the 2013-14 school year. The hope is that these partnerships will help to bridge the gap between student readiness and student achievement.

SAMSUNGTogether we will implement a three pronged strategy toward our goal:

  • We will facilitate a communitywide campaign in conjunction with Birmingham City School’s Partners in Education program that promotes the importance of students being prepared and present to learn on the first day of school.
  • We will seek to mitigate any perceived or actual internal barriers in the enrollment and registration process through continuous improvement measures and innovative approaches.
  • We will conduct a series of initiatives that seek to remove financial barriers to families needing assistance with the resources needed for their children to be ready to learn on day one.



Giving Urban and Rural Students Access to College Scholarships, Careers in Trade, Military and Volunteers in Service to America

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The 2014 College Scholarship & Career Fair

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Operation Warm

Operation Warm – Birmingham is a community wide initiative that provides winter coats and jackets to children that are economically disadvantaged. No child should have to go back and forth to school without being able to stay warm in the winter months.

In low-income and poor families, parents struggle with choices every day: Food or electricity? Clothes or rent? The gift of a new winter coat to a child in need is one easy choice, and it warms the body and soul. It supercharges the recipient’s self-esteem and helps him arrive at school warm, on time, and ready to learn. The new coat reminds the child that he/she is important.

You can help provide winter coats to children in need here in Birmingham for $20.00.

A hand up…not a hand out

Ministering to the needs of the disaster survivors is not a job…it’s a privilege!  Individuals and organizations have been lending a hand in the relief and recovery efforts. Russell Manufacturing has significantly helped by providing clothing to families affected by the storms and others in need. We have helped to bridge partnerships with Russell, the Jefferson County Emergency Management Agency, Adventist Community Service, Birmingham City Schools, and The Birmingham Parent Teacher Association.

1500 winter Jackets, 3,000 Polo shirts, 12,000 socks, and 2500 sweatshirts have been distributed to these families and senior citizens just in time to help during the onset of winter. These clothing items have not been a handout but have been seen as a hand up for those who literally have to replace everything they own.

Marks Village Initiative

Mission Birmingham has the privilege of providing family services at Marks Village Housing Community Center. Our staff has more than 20 years of experience in working with low income families. There have been many programs implemented since gaining site control; one of them is a K-12 tutoring program which helps students daily afterschool. Ebony Pearls is another program that empowers and educates women on how to preserve their lives through knowledge of the danger of HIV.  Teach First Parents Club is a program designed to show easy and fun ways to teach pre-school children at home. There are other programs designed specifically to equip young boys and girls with the life-skills that they need for success. On October 29th, a health fair was held and area physicians agreed to donate their time and resources to assess some of the health needs in the community. Over 450 individuals attended making this a huge success. 2012 will bring many opportunities including our jobs training program.

Christmas in the City

Partnering with Covenant Presbyterian, Covenant Community, The Church at Brook Hills, New Covenant, the City of Birmingham Council of PTA’s, The Birmingham Housing Authority and other partners, we were able to provide Christmas gifts for more than 200 children during 2011 holiday season and feed more than 750 families.

The Christmas gifts included clothes, shoes, bicycles, electronics, and toys. Because of our partnerships with organizations who gather families, we were able to identify families who were definitely in need this Christmas. The parents were excited and so moved by the generosity of our partners. Mobilizing the CHURCH and communities for the purpose of strengthening families has been realized through this initiative.

Drop Out Recovery

We have worked diligently the last couple of years facilitating a dropout recovery program partnership between the Birmingham City Schools and local churches.  This program has provided young adults between the ages of 17-21 an opportunity to re-enroll in community based sites to recover their credits and receive a high school diploma.  In 2011, 99 students who had dropped out of school and were on the streets have now completed their high school education and have received a full diploma.  Most of these students are working toward a secondary education and have a new desire for success in life. 

Lives are being transformed!  A part of the celebration is that the churches are ministering to the students and their families.  Several students committed their lives to Christ through relationships with the churches!  One mother whose son had quit school, made sure that he had enrolled into this program and attended school each day.  For her efforts, the son has received a second chance by receiving a diploma. He has also moved from getting into trouble in his idle time to working towards a degree in nursing.  This is an important beginning towards addressing the challenges caused by the high dropout rates in our region.

Birmingham Recovery Initiative Launches Website

An initiative of the Mission Birmingham and the City of Birmingham, The Birmingham Recovery Initiative launched iCareBham.org today in an effort to coordinate volunteers and supplies that will be needed in the months of recovery ahead. Birmingham – car rental . Birmingham trip planner .

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