IMPACT Magazine Spring/Summer Edition 2022

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IMPACT Spring/Summer 2022

Crossover Community Impact Magazine

Spring/Summer Edition

Restoring Our Community


I M PA C T

Volume 6, Number 10 2022 Spring/Summer Edition

EDITOR Rondalyn Abode, Director of Development

ART/DESIGN Janice Roberson Connolly, MBA Director of Marketing & Design

BOARD OF DIRECTORS PHILIP ABODE MICHELLE BARNETT JEAN BARRETT JOHN HOLLIDAY, JR SHEILA LOFTIN REBECCA MARKS-JIMMERSON ROBERT MARSHALL DON MILLICAN SAM RADER CHRIS THRUTCHLEY ANGIE WALKER O.C. WALKER

ABOUT US IMPACT is published two times a year: Winter and Summer. Crossover Community Impact 940 East 36th Street North Tulsa, OK 74106 (918) 856-5377 www.crossoverimpact.org info@crossoverimpact.org

2022 has been an exciting year for the Crossover family! We broke ground on the Crossover Community Center! We have seen some tremendous academic gains at our boys and girls schools this past school year, especially in the STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering, and Math) Center. Crossover Health Services opened its second location to serve more people in our community, and we are just over halfway through the year! As the Crossover family continues to grow, I am constantly humbled by the fact that I get to be a part of all of this. Even though there is still much work for us to do as an organization, I look forward to seeing God’s work in us and through us here in our community. In this edition of the IMPACT magazine, you will read the stories of some of the amazing folks that God has brought to be a part of the Crossover family. Even though God has done more than we could have asked or imagined over the past ten years of Crossover Community Impact’s existence, His goodness to us is most clearly seen in the people that He has called to join us in this work. I am sure that you will see exactly what I mean when you read their stories. My hope is that as you read this current edition of our magazine, that you will share my excitement for the amazing work that God is accomplishing in our community! When I look at everything He has done, there is no way that any of us can take credit for it. I want to thank you for partnering with us in this important work. Your prayers, financial support, and volunteer hours have played a key role in the life of Crossover. Please be encouraged as we seek to restore our community through reconciliation, love, and justice. Grace and Peace,

FOLLOW US FACEBOOK facebook.com/crossoverimpact INSTAGRAM instagram.com/crossover communityimpact TWITTER twitter.com/crossoverimpact

Philip Abode Co-Founder Crossover Community Impact


Coffee & Convo at Crossover Preparatory Academy

What’s Inside Features 4. Crossover Community Impact 6. Crossover Preparatory Academy 8. Crossover Kids Program 10. StreetLeader Program 12. Crossover Sports Association 14. Crossover Bible Church 16. Crossover Scholarship Fund 18. Crossover Health Services 20. Crossover Community Center 22. Crossover Community Impact

Cover Photo: Crossover Community Center’s Groundbreaking Ceremony Shovels.

We would love the opportunity to get to know you and to treat you to coffee at Crossover Prep. Please join us for convocation and a tour to learn about how you can make an impact in north Tulsa.

Every Wednesday and Thursday 8:15-9:15 a.m. 5424 N. Madison Ave Tulsa, OK 74106 RSVP 539.777.2559 Derrick.Hill@crossoverprep.org


Crossover

God Does The Heavy Lifting by Rondalyn Abode

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od does does the heavy lifting,” is a phrase my husband, Philip Abode, has made popular in the Crossover world. He can say this with confidence because he has seen God do exceedingly and abundantly more than we could ever ask or imagine on Crossover’s behalf. He’s seen God allow us to purchase over 42 acres for $110,000 debt-free, and then he watched as God created the opportunity for Crossover to swap those 42 acres for 10 acres of land that was valued at $1 million! It was on this land, that we were able to break ground on the 95,000 square foot facility that has been named the Crossover Community Center (CCC).

pening within the walls of the CCC. During the daytime, it will act primarily as a school building for Crossover Prep’s all-boys 6th12th grade school. The weight rooms and fitness rooms will be available at all times, but they will see the most traffic during the evenings and weekends. There will always be a tournament, class, or event happening within this space. Every Crossover entity will be able to take advantage of Crossover finally having a permanent home and having Crossover Health Services next door solidifies our opportunity to serve our community best! Crossover Development Company will be able to have personal finance classes to help families on their journey to becoming homeowners, specifically of the homes that Crossover Development Company has revitalized. The Crossover Kids and StreetLeader Programs will be able to expand because of the CCC. The summer program, for instance, will be longer than 4 weeks helping students avoid summer learning loss while creating a space for

The possibilities are endless when we imagine how this center can be an anchor in our community.”

On April 15th, 2022, just days before Crossover Bible Church celebrated its 16th Anniversary, on Good Friday no less, over 200 people joined us to celebrate all that this facility will bring to our community. The Crossover Community Center will be a place where community happens, and we hope that it will indeed be the hub of our community! There will always be something hap-

-Rondalyn A.

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Community Impact

We are a Christian organization committed to restoring our community through reconciliation, love, and justice.

Pictured above: Crossover Community Center’s Groundbreaking Day. Pictures by Blair Williams Photography. the students to engage in STEAM (Science, Technology, Engineering, Art, and Math) activities! Crossover Health Services will be able to expand its programming with the FreshRx “Food Is Medicine” Program, and it will see the inception of the “Prescriptions for Exercise” Program which will help people in our community live a healthier and more active lifestyle. This is just the start! Honestly, the possibilities are endless when we imagine how this center can be an anchor in our community. As we prepare for Crossover’s Formal, “Restoring Our Community” Banquet, and Adult Scholarship Prom Fundraiser, I realize how much easier it will be to rent this space for these events; instead of, having to find a venue each year. The best is truly yet to come for Crossover, and I’m so excited to see how this center will transform our community!

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Rondalyn Abode is passionate about bringing God the most glory, and she believes that her role as the Director of Development for CCI is instrumental in her doing just that! She has been married to her “Honey,” Philip Abode, for 20 years, and she has the sheer joy of watching God transform him daily. She is most inspired by her three little people, Temple, Priest, and Truth, and she often despises the “baby dog,” Rocky. Please go to www.crossoverimpact.org to learn more about Crossover Community Impact and the great community development work the team is doing!


CrossoverPREP

We are committed to developing educated, godly young people who love north Tulsa.

I Am My Brother’s Keeper by Marvion Weeks

I trust all of my brothers. they have proven so many times that I can turn to them in my time of need, and I’ve learned to support them in the same way.” -<Marvion w.

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t Crossover Prep, our motto is, custos fratris mei sum ego (I am my brother’s keeper). We say this every day at convocation, but for the words to truly have meaning, you have to put them into action. I’ve never really thought much about these words until the Fall of 2021, when I learned about something I couldn’t handle alone. During the Fall, I was introduced to a program called, the Thunder Fellows. When I first heard about the program I wasn’t going to pursue it. My STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering, and

Pictured above: Marvion Weeks Math) Center teachers (Mrs. Long and Mrs. Stocksen) told Quincy, Reece, Josiah, and I about the program and encouraged us to apply. Even though I liked the idea I was nervous to consider it, let alone apply. I already had a lot going on, and I knew it was going to be burdensome because of all the hard work necessary to be successful as a Thunder Fellow. So, I turned to my brothers, and they told me that they would be alongside me every step of the way, and that if I needed them they would help me out. We all decided to apply, and little did we know that this would be the start of our Thunder Fellows journey!

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Pictured far left: Marvion with his fellow CPA Thunder Fellows (Reece and Quincy) and STEM teachers, Katie Long and Kelly Stocksen. Pictured left: Marvion and Quincy

Fast forward past the months-long process of interviews and activities to gain acceptance to the Thunder Fellows Program. It was a regular day of school, and Quincy, Reece, and I had been awaiting an email. Our STEM teachers had been holding out on the news of a lifetime; we had been accepted! It was 3rd period, and our teachers told us to come outside to help with boxes. This was a strange request, but we complied. When we got outside there were cameras and balloons everywhere. They had come to the school to let us know the good news!

Pictured right: Marvion’s drawing recognized at “The Big Show” Exhibit at the Philbrook Museum of Fine Arts this past March.

At the start of Thunder Fellows, it was pretty easy, a few data projects here and there, and a few companies talked to us about analytics. However, as we progressed through the program, things got harder. For instance, we had an Economics Fair, and we had to move fast and come up with an idea. I once again turned to Quincy and Reece and they helped me come up with “Tis The Seasoning”, a spicy seasoning with a Takis like flavor. The idea was a huge success at the Economics Fair, and I learned all of the elements of coming up with a concept then executing my idea to create a product for consumption. I’m happy I had my brothers with me because I can honestly say that without them, I probably would not have gotten to where I am at this point in my life, especially in this program. It’s definitely amazing being in a community that is so loving, caring and understanding as Crossover. I trust all my brothers, and they have proven so many times that I can turn to them in my time of need. I’ve in-turn learned to support them in the same way. Custos fratris mei sum ego- I am my truly brother’s keeper, and together we will rise! Marvion Weeks is a sophomore at Crossover Prep where he is about to begin his fourth year as a student. He has four siblings (Tatiana, Jermaine, James, and Cameron.) He plans to start a business or be a politician after he graduates from college, and he has already attended college tours to begin determining the next best place for him as a lifelong learner. He is a good friend, and he takes seriously his responsibility to be his brothers’ keepers. If you would like to learn more about Crossover Preparatory Academy, please go to www.crossoverprep.org.

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Crossover Scholarship Fund

These students are our future health professionals, social workers, teachers, policy makers, and military men and women—they are the future of our nation. We must do more. And with your help we can. If you would like to learn more about the Crossover Scholarship Fund, please go to http://crossoverscholarshipfund. org.


Crossover Kids Our Afterschool and Summer Enrichment STEAM-based Program at Hawthorne Elementary School.

When Helping Kids Helps You by Lydia Ellis

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od, I love you but No! I am not working with kids!” These are the words I would soon regret after declaring them. Growing up I always knew that I would be in ministry, I thought about being an astronaut or a baker, but ministry was always my longterm pursuit. In the eighth grade, I was asked how I saw myself in the future, and without thinking, I said that I would be a minister and I was going to Oklahoma. To think, a 14-year-old girl from southern Illinois dreamt of going to Oklahoma and being a pastor …WHAT? It sounded crazy to everyone else, but to me, it made sense. With the guidance of my parents, I found a school in Oklahoma, and in 2018 I graduated high school and was set to attend the school I googled five years prior, Oral Roberts University. At a young age, I made my life’s scripture Isaiah 6:8, “ And I heard the voice of the Lord saying, ’Whom shall I send, and who will go for us?’ Then I said, ’Here I am! Send me.’” In 2019, my

And I heard the voice of the lord saying, ‘Who shall I send, and who will go for us?’ Then I said, ‘Here I am! Send me.’ ” -Isaiah 6:: 8 sophomore year, I struggled in my classes and purpose. I knew what God was calling me to be, but I did not know how to do it. I challenged God to reveal my purpose, or I would leave ORU. I heard God remind me of my life scripture, and I rededicated my life to being sent to where He wanted me. God told me that I would be used to reach the next generation through sports and recreation.

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Pictured left and above: Ms. Lydia in action with the Crossover Kids and StreetLeaders.

In the fall of 2021, I needed a church and a practicum site. I talked to my professor, and she recommended Crossover Bible and the youth ministry, Vibe. On my first Sunday, I was immediately taken in, and I felt welcomed! Within twenty minutes, I knew that I would be coming to Crossover. I met Mrs. Rondalyn, and she introduced me to some of the church’s leadership. After hearing my story, she told me that I would be a good fit for the Crossover Kids Program; I did not like this idea. What’s the issue, you may ask? Two years ago, I was asked to go into children’s ministry, and I swore it off. I thought that working with children would not be beneficial for what I wanted to do in ministry. I only

wanted ‘to be the cool youth leader and truly make a difference’, the irony! I never considered that the generation God had called me to was all generations, to all His children. Through volunteering and as staff, the time I have spent at Crossover Kids has been a reigniting of my child-like faith, and I have found a love for children. Working with kids has helped me simplify my theology; it is not big words or elaborate prayers, but a child going to their Father for guidance and love. I thought that working with Crossover Kids would only help fulfill class credit; but instead, it has helped me find my true purpose.

Lydia Ellis is a senior theology major at Oral Roberts University (ORU) with a concentration in sports ministry and a minor in youth and family ministry. Lydia is the only daughter to her parents Ed and Helen and the youngest to her brothers, Jared and Josh. Lydia has been attending Crossover Bible Church since September 2021 and started volunteering at Crossover Kids in the same month. This past January, Lydia became a fourth-grade college leader in the Crossover Kids Program and a mentor in the StreetLeader Program. In her free time, Lydia can be found watching anime, knitting, and attempting to learn Spanish. After graduating from ORU in the fall of 2022, Lydia will attend Dallas Baptist University to study Christian Ministry to be equipped to go into the field of Christian camping. To learn more about our STEAM-based After-School and Summer Day Camp at Hawthorne Elementary School, please go to www.crossoverimpact.org/crossover-kids/.

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StreetLeaders StreetLeaders work as counselors, tutors, and mentors for our elementary age students within the Crossover Kids program.

Pictured above: Haven with fellow StreetLeaders and Crossover Kids.

We provide our kids with a safe/fun christian environment where they can be themselves.” -<haven g. Crossover Community Impact

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Making An Impact by Haven Grayson

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never realized how much of an IMPACT I was having on kids in north Tulsa until one of them was crying and saying she didn’t want to go home, but she wanted to stay and talk to me at Hawthorne instead. Not only did it make me realize how important I was to her, but this let me know how I impacted her life at that very moment. The connections I make with my kids are everything to me because if I can make their day/life better I truly want to. Hi, my name is Haven Grayson, and I’m a StreetLeader with Crossover Community Impact. I was first introduced to Crossover in the summer of 2019 when I was invited to their youth group called “Vibe” by a neighbor. I was just starting my 8th-grade year then, and I love that as a sophomore I am still a part of Crossover! Crossover has had an amazing impact on my life when it comes to what I have learned as well as the people I have met. I have met amazing mentors through Crossover who help me further my education as well as grow in my relationship with God. They have taught me how to build a resume, how to set short-term and long-term goals, exposed me to options after high school, taught me tips and tricks to help with the ACT, etc. I would describe Crossover as a non-profit organization that strives to help my community be a better place for everybody and focuses on developing youth. I want people to know that Crossover is a warm, positive environment where people open their arms to you and help you on your life journey while simultaneously pushing you to be a better person every single day. My current role in Crossover impacts the kids I work with and the environment around them. I work with the 3rd graders at Hawthorne in the afterschool program where I tutor and assist them with their homework Monday through Thursday. We provide educational games and focus on individual growth with their understanding of math and reading. On Wednesday we do a STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering, and Math) lesson. On Thursdays, we teach them a story about God and how he influences us, helps us, provides for us, and much more! I am also there to be a positive influence in their life. Some of the kids that we work with

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Pictured above: Haven at Kids Across America. don’t have a good/safe environment at home. We provide our kids with a safe/fun Christian environment where they can be themselves. I feel like being a positive role model and someone they can trust and can truly talk to shows the impact I have on them and the power of our relationship. All in all, Crossover Community Impact is an amazing organization that I am very proud to be a part of. Above all else, I believe the role that I play supports Crossover’s vision of “Restoring Our Community resulting in north Tulsa being a community of healthy individuals, faithful families, peaceful neighborhoods, and thriving institutions”.

Haven Grayson was born and raised in Tulsa, Oklahoma where she has lived in north Tulsa her entire life. She is a sophomore attending Will Rogers High School, and she is 15 years old. After graduation, she wants to go to college for counseling and become a social worker. She has been a Streetleader since the summer of 2021, and true to her name, she provides a “haven” or safe place for the students in the Crossover Kids and the StreetLeader Programs. Her ability to love people well and to encourage them will make a huge impact for generations to come. To learn more about the StreetLeader Program, please go to www.crossoverimpact.org/streetleader/.


CROSSOVER

LIONS

We are committed to producing athletes that excel both on and off the field.

Pictured above (left): Crossover Lions Soccer Team; Pictured above: Natalie during high school signing day.

CSA Club Soccer by Natalie Belanger

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grew up playing club soccer for a large club but never really fellike I fit in. I’m not from the Tulsa area and my parents weren’t even aware of the concept of club sports. Both of these factors left me at a major disadvantage in the hyper-competitive world of club sports. When I was about 9 years old, I transitioned into club soccer from a small academy team. When I entered high school, I was still playing club soccer and was surrounded by girls that went to large schools with soccer teams that competed year after year for state titles. I’ve gone to Collinsville Public Schools for my entire K-12 career. Our girls’ varsity soccer team had a record-breaking 2021-2022 season. However, before that, we struggled to even make it to the second

the team has allowed me to build lifelong friendships and given me opportunities on and off the fIeld.” -Natalie B. round of playoffs. Throughout my time at various local, large soccer clubs, I never had a teammate that also went to Collinsville. Most of my other teammates had 3-4 players on the team that went to the same school as them. This resulted in the formation of small cliques. I often felt isolated at games, practices, and team parties. In May of 2020, a coach I had played with before I ever played club soc-


SPORTS Pictured above: Natalie in action. cer contacted me and asked if I would guest play in Oklahoma City with his team for a tournament. While guest playing, I really clicked with the team, and we ended up winning the tournament (pictured above). Shortly after that tournament. I left my previous club team and joined Crossover Sports Association (CSA). Crossover is a club sports association that helps athletes from Northeast Oklahoma reach the next level. CSA is different from other sports clubs in the Tulsa area because it focuses on reaching underserved demographics and areas within Tulsa. Crossover Sports has given me an immense number of opportunities. The team has allowed me to build lifelong friendships and given me opportunities on and off the field. I stepped into a captain position on the field which taught me leadership skills. During my time with Crossover, I was one of the oldest girls on the team. I was able to influence younger players and help them throughout the season. The development of these skills followed me to school soccer where I was nominated as one of the team captains. Off the field, Crossover played a vital role in my future educational plans. Because of Crossover Sports Association, I will be attending Southwestern College in Winfield, KS to

play soccer and get a degree in biology with a focus on pre-veterinary science. I honestly don’t think I would be playing college soccer without Crossover Sports. Unlike most club teams, Crossover Sports’ soccer team focuses on college showcases, making it much easier to get seen by college coaches. I’m incredibly thankful for the opportunity to be able to play with Crossover. My coach, Marc Hansen, and the girls I’ve had the opportunity to play with made my experience one that is full of laughs and unforgettable memories. Natalie Belanger is a Senior at Collinsville High School, and she has the opportunity to continue her love for soccer as a college athlete at Southwestern College. Natalie has developed into a leader amongst her peers which is a reminder of how important character development is in youth sports. Natalie has also been a part of the first team of club sports that Crossover offers which will expand with the coming Crossover Community Center. Having the opportunity to bring soccer to north Tulsa will be a game changer, just like Natalie! To learn more about Crossover Sports Association, please go to www.crossoverlions.org.


Restoring our community by making disciples while loving and serving our neighbors.

Crossover Bible Church by Janice Connolly

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Pictured above: David & Janice’s August 2003 Wedding

lmost 29 years ago, I was a high school senior who bounced out of my front door into the back seat of my best friend Nicole’s old Lincoln Zephyr, to join a very young David Michael Newman Connolly, in the back seat. He will tell you my first words to him were, “Hi, my name is Janice Roberson, and I am running for Miss Black Tulsa. Can I have five dollars?” I don’t recall what I said exactly, but I will tell you that conversation lit a SPARK that has lasted 29 years! And little did David and I know that our journey together would lead us back to Tulsa to serve with Philip and Rondalyn at Crossover.

Although I first met the Abodes at their wedding in Kansas City, Missouri, it was around the time they were at Dallas Theological Seminary, that we learned of the dream that is Crossover, an organization holistically serving north Tulsa. This was an exciting vision because my childhood church, St. Andrew’s Baptist Church (St. ABC), had been serving north Tulsa for decades. As a kid, I frequented north Tulsa church programs, such as summer camps at the Salvation Army North Mabee Boys’ and Girls’ Club (Crossover Bible Church’s current location), Vacation Bible School, and other activities too numerous to count near St. ABC. Crossover’s dream to make a tangible IMPACT sounded like the kind of effect my church had on many, and it seemed like Crossover could take the vision even further than any of us could imagine. Initially, David and I were unable to join the Abodes in 2002, because we were already serving in a ministry at the time. We had no clue as to what our roles would be; we just knew we were excited about the vision for Crossover and what God was going to do. David and I stayed behind and continued to work and serve in Texas for 16 years prior to moving back to Tulsa in 2018 to join the Crossover Family. Our transition to Tulsa over the last 5 years has been a remarkable spiritual journey, to say the least! Today, I am the Director of

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Pictured above: Marital Missional team members Carl & Angie Walker and other team members; The Connolly Family- Janice, David, Hannah, Catherine, and Joshua.

our ministry provides Crossover bible church members with the chance to walk together in healthy marriages, for the purpose of discipleshipmaking.” -janice c. Marketing & Design for Crossover, where I help share Crossover’s story, representing all the organizations through my professional background in graphic design and visual storytelling. Also, David and I lead the Marriage Missional (M & M) Team, a ministry that serves married couples (and wantingto-be married singles). We have been married for 19 years and friends for 29 years. We believe in the importance of solid marriages and having the right tools to navigate marriage’s ups and downs, like death, disabilities, successes, job loss, infidelity, and more. Our ministry provides Crossover Bible Church members with

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the chance to walk together in healthy marriages, for the purpose of disciplemaking. This Fall, our group will be hosting our first marriage conference, SPARK 2022, at New City Fellowship on Labor Day weekend, Sept 2nd and 3rd. It’s open to the first 30 couples, and childcare will be available. Doors Open at 5:15 pm. We have some pretty amazing guest speakers and activities planned. Registration is available now online through our church’s app or online at www. crossoverbible.churchcenter.com/registrations/events/1331608. Get registered today! Janice Roberson Connolly has been the Director of Marketing & Design for Crossover Community Impact for five years. She and David have been married 19 years, and David works for Crossover Preparatory Academy as the Humanities and Visual Art Instructor. Janice is a retired Air Force Veteran, who pursues excellence in everything she does. David and Janice have three children: Hannah (17), Catherine (15), and Joshua (11). Everyone in the Connolly family is a gifted artist who not only creates beauty but also highlights the beauty of God’s world. Their heart for others is exactly what Crossover needed. To learn more about CBC’s “gather, go, grow, gospel works” model, please go to www.crossoverbible.org.


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Crossover

Taking A Leap

Pictured above: (far left) Kalifa’s sons, Jamari and Hamadi; Pictured right: Kalifa with her entire family.

by Kalifa Bandele-Smith

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hile taking my son to a basketball game I saw a pamphlet that caught my attention. The pamphlet was for a new all boys, Christian, private school in north Tulsa. Seeing a young black man on the cover wearing a suit made me pick it up to read later. At the time my oldest son was in the 6th grade, and my youngest son was in the 3rd. Later I read the pamphlet, knowing that my oldest son, Hamadi, needed a change since he’d struggled with school most of his life. He was on an Individualized learning plan (IEP), but I was not seeing the changes and improvements that I was hoping for. Finally, when Hamadi reached the 8th grade, we decided to take a chance on a brand-new school that had only been open for one year. Nervous yet hopeful, we took the leap. My children’s education and success has always been a top priority, and I felt a change in direction was needed to see the results that I was anticipating.

My youngest son, Jamari, was struggling as well. He was often getting into trouble at school and some of his behaviors were preventing him from reaching his full potential academically. Once he became old enough, I knew that he would join his brother at Crossover Prep. I noticed a change in both of my boys’ academic and social lives almost immediately. The class sizes are a lot smaller, and this instantly became one of my favorite things about Crossover Prep. With smaller class sizes my eldest son could get the help that he needed and feel more confident asking questions. Also, it’s a lot harder for him to hide in the back of the class and feel left out. My boys and I also love the fact that the small close-knit school assigned all the boys an Academic Coach (A.C) that would

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Scholarship Fund The Crossover Scholarship Fund provides a tuition-free education for the students at Crossover Prep!

I honestly don’t know where my boys would be if I Had not made the call and took the leap of faith when I did.” -Kalifa S.

help guide them throughout their academic journey. A.C.s are pretty much always available to the students and their parents to assist with schoolwork, provide encouragement, and build godly relationships. Another way that Crossover Prep builds a sense of community is by holding convocation every morning to start the day and assigning all the boys to teams or small groups where the young men support and encourage each other while also focusing on accountability. As a parent of two young men, I’ve always made it a point to be as involved in their school life as I could. This year I am serving on the Lions’ Den Parent Group as the President. The Lions’ Den is a parent group that is similar to a PTA (Parent Teacher Association) and Booster Club combined. We meet and discuss ideas and make plans for ways that we can help more parents get involved and promote school spirit among other things. A great accomplishment of the Lions’ Den this year is notably our “Donuts with Dads” day. We were overjoyed by how many dads showed up that morning to spend quality time with their sons, and the young men were encouraged too! My family found a hidden gem when we found Crossover Prep. I honestly don’t know where my boys would be if I had not made that call and took the leap of faith when I did. I am forever grateful to Crossover, and I look forward to seeing how this amazing school will continue to grow.

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Pictured above: Kalifa’s son, Jamari.

Kalifa Bandele-Smith is a Lead Teacher at CAP-Tulsa and the Founder of Sukari Glo Skincare. She has been married to Anthony Smith for 6 years, and their family is completed by their 6 kiddos, Hamadi (17), Jamari (14), Anthony (15), Alyjah (13), Aubrielle (8), and Autumn (6). As an Educator, Kalifa’s emphasis on strong academics and social accountability is changing the narrative for her kids and their peers. As an entrepreneur, her desire to create opportunities for herself and her family according to their skill set is evident. She loves people well and creates a sense of family and belonging instantly, and we are so grateful she chose Crossover Prep. We are also excited that her son, Hamadi, will be a part of the first graduating class of Crossover Prep! To learn more about the Crossover Scholarship Fund and the most IMPACTful state tax credits available, please go to www.crossoverscholarshipfund.org.


We are committed to living out Christ’s compassion, dignity, and healing in our community through healthcare.

Crossover Health Services by Justin Pickard

-Justin P.

Fast forward to a year or two ago and we found ourselves applying to receive New Market Tax Credits for the Crossover Community Center with the one organization in Oklahoma that had received tax credits that year. This had the potential of bringing $4 million in equity to the project. The organization seemed to genuinely appreciate the work of Crossover and the intended goals of the community center, but what they really needed were health impacts. They asked if we could build a new clinic– we respectfully declined (although that helped lead to us opening a second site of Crossover Health Services in the beautiful and unused primary care wing of the 56th Street North Tulsa Health Department building).

round 10 years ago, I was in grad school taking a class called “Strategic Management of Non-Profits,” and I was able to focus a large assignment on working out a strategic plan for Crossover Community Impact (which we had barely incorporated at the time). I merged the vision that Philp had of a churchbased nonprofit that took a comprehensive approach to meeting the needs of its community with a community development corporation approach that focuses on a specific neighborhood.

Immediately afterwards, I remember feeling convicted from the Lord that although it seemed like we would not be able to get the tax credits, he had put us in a great position to impact the “social determinants of health.” We were, as some people had pointed out to us, a kind of perfect public health organization - and that had not been part of any planned strategy! The conviction that particularly hit me was that maybe the Lord wanted us to address these needs and just used the tax credit situation to open our eyes to what he had orchestrated.

so now We are focusing on being faithful to plan and prepare for what we have been dreaming of! ”

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Pictured left: Crossover Health Services New Clinic at the Tulsa Health Department; Pictured above: Justin with his family during his graduate studies at Harvard specializing in Urban Planning.

Another thing he had orchestrated, was that the incredible Janet Hendricks had just shifted to working with Crossover Community Impact and Crossover Health Services (CHS) from Crossover Prep. Not only did she have an MBA and all kinds of great HR experience to bring to the table, but she had focused her undergrad studies on how to run a community center and is more passionate about using it to address the health needs of our community than anyone around! So, naturally we started working on our own Crossover Public Health Plan! We started with researching the particular public health problems that the Tulsa Health Department studies showed. We found that our two clinics’ zip codes were the complete worst for health outcomes respectively. And then we started interviewing our fantastic CHS team to get their insights on what programs their experience showed would bring the most impact. And then God brought us the $22 million to construct the community center (including the new market tax credits af-

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ter all!). So now we are focusing on being faithful to plan and prepare for what we have been dreaming of! We pray God will use this state-of-the-art workout facility, full-scale commercial kitchen, and classroom space to host lifestyle coaching, wellness activities, nutrition classes and cooking programs, support groups, adult fitness classes, and recreational sports leagues! And we pray that in doing all these things, God will get the glory for what he orchestrates and pulls together with and through his people!

Justin Pickard has been married to his wife, Leah, for 20 years, and 10 years ago, they moved their young family to Boston, so that Justin could be equipped and prepared to lead Crossover Community Impact. It’s been incredible to witness the ways they have loved on their community, and it’s inspiring to watch even their kids Ellie (19), Ian (17), Augie (14), and Isaiah (12), serve alongside them. To learn more about Justin’s labor of love as the Executive Director of the public health organization Crossover Community Impact, and the ways that Crossover Health Services is working to eradicate health disparities, go to www.crossoverhealthservices.org.


Crossover

From Dream to Impact by Michael Phelps

J

ohn Perkins, co-founder of the Christian Community Development Association, said, “In America, education and quality of life are directly related. Lacking a good education means lacking, among other things, access to the very doorway that leads to a wholesome lifestyle. Education is not a luxury in modern American society—it is essential for survival.” Crossover is a ministry that focuses on providing education opportunities and increasing quality of life in the community they love. The upcoming Crossover Community Center will further Crossover’s ministry possibilities by providing a home for Crossover Prep Academy and a place for the community to engage in health and wellness activities. In 2004, after finishing college, my wife and I moved to Tulsa. We attended Christ Presbyterian Church (CPC) where a group of fam-

ilies, including Justin and Leah Pickard, through the influence of John Perkins and his book, Restoring At-Risk Communities, began moving to north Tulsa neighborhoods to live and invest in the community. Through the encouragement of those families, I was invited to help with their community projects and observe their growing love and passion for north Tulsa. This was my first introduction to a ministry that would eventually join with Pastor Philip Abode and Crossover Bible Church to impact north Tulsa. In 2017, Cyntergy, the architecture and engineering firm where I work, had the privilege of master planning the 9-acre site adjacent to the Crossover Health Services building. In 2018, I became directly involved as the project manager for the Crossover Community Center design team. Through that role, I was

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Community Center able to see how the dream to impact north Tulsa had grown into a multi-faceted ministry making an impact through health care, education, student mentoring, youth sports, Crossover Bible Church, and a development company. The ministry had grown to the point that a facility was needed to allow it to make a bigger impact in the community. It is a powerful story of God’s faithfulness to use his people to move mountains. Even before construction began, the Crossover Community Center project had already become a learning opportunity for Crossover students in the Crossover Kids and StreetLeader programs. Through Crossover’s initiative, Cyntergy provided office tours, job shadowing, and STEM presentations on architecture,

One day, I hope to work alongside a crossover student who was inspired to pursue architecture or engineering through these interactions.” -Michael P. Pictured left and above: Groundbreaking ceremony. Pictures by Blair Williams Photography. interior design, and engineering. Our discussions included architectural design, interior finish selection, soil types, structural, electrical, plumbing, and HVAC systems. During one presentation, ceiling tiles were removed in the classroom at Hawthorne Elementary to reveal the building’s engineering systems to provide the students with a real-world example of the topics being discussed. These interactions exposed students to multiple career possibilities and illustrate Crossover’s long-term vision to build up the community. One day, I hope to work alongside a Crossover student who was inspired to pursue architecture or engineering through these interactions. Crossover has persevered through fundraising, a global pandemic, and rising construction costs to maintain their focus on making an impact in north Tulsa and to keep the Crossover Community Center project moving forward. Their faith that God will provide has been steadfast. The number of people that attended the groundbreaking shows how many people believe in its mission to meet the real needs of the community.

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Mike Phelps is a Principal at Cyntergy, which is an Architectural and Engineering firm in downtown Tulsa. He is a licensed mechanical engineer and serves as the Director of Project Management. He has been married to his wife, Jennifer, for 18 years, and they have two children: Hudson who is 14 years old and Megan who is 12 years old. Mike’s commitment to excellence has been an encouragement for the Crossover team, and his partnership in this great work reveals the beauty of God’s grace and faithfulness. To learn more about the Crossover Community Center and all of the amenities it will add to the community, please go to www.crossoverimpact.org/crossover-community-center.


Investing

In May of 2002, as I was tying up loose ends and preparing to graduate from the University of Tulsa, I learned that

I owed $25,635 to Uncle Sam and I guess Aunt Sallie Mae for my education. I started crying, then I called my Uncle Ronald (I’m his name sake), and I told him through my tears how much I owed. He said to me, “Roni, it was the best investment you could make in yourself.” That notion has been the lens through which I have seen education ever since. It wasn’t until 2017 when I began raising money for the students at Crossover Prep that I began to understand how much of an investment others made to support me in reaching my goal of becoming a first-generation college graduate in my immediate family. A quality education creates opportunities in ways that are unmatched for the average person. “May the odds be ever in your favor,” is the most succinct way to describe someone’s chances of becoming a professional athlete, but as Derrick Hill’s son, Justice Hill (Running Back for the Baltimore Ravens) says, “You can go ‘pro’ in so many other fields” as a result of receiving the type of life-changing education the students at Crossover Prep are receiving. This past school year, we were able to raise almost $700,000 for the Crossover Scholarship Fund; this was double what we raised in 2020. We hope to double our fundraising for the Crossover Scholarship Fund once again to ensure that all 123 students from grades 6 to 12 will receive a scholarship to cover their education. The best part is you not only receive tax deductions for your donation to the Crossover Scholarship Fund, but you also receive state tax credits (75% credit with a two-year commitment), decreasing your tax liability while giving the gift of opportunity to the students at both the boys’ and girls’ schools. Thank you to everyone who has already made this investment into the lives of the students at Crossover Prep. As a tuition-free private school, we sincerely could not do what we do without your support. Thank you for creating new futures for our kiddos. If you have not given to the Crossover Scholarship Fund in 2022, please consider giving a gift to receive the most IMPACTful state tax credits available. The Crossover Scholarship Fund is a separate 501(C)(3) organization from Crossover Community Impact. This means, if you give a gift to both organizations, you can receive deductions from both organizations and state tax credits for your donation to the Crossover Scholarship Fund. Our goal for this school year is $1,400,000. Grateful for grace and you,

Rondalyn Abode Director of Development www.crossoverimpact.org


in Our Future

Pictured above: CPAB with Baltimore Raven’s Running Back, Justice Hill; CPAG Morning Prayer Group; CPAB in STEM lab.

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Our Vision for 36th S. North

Our Dream for the Future... When you invest in the vision, you do more than touch individual lives... every contribution ripples outward to create “social return” —the positive impact on north Tulsa and the entire Tulsa community. For more information: (918) 856-5377 x106 www.crossoverimpact.org