Hi, Everyone! My name is Nancy Reeves, and I am the coordinator of the adults with special
abilities program here at the BLOOM (Building Lives Occupational Outreach Ministry) Center.
We are a practical, hands-on ministry of Central Bearden Baptist Church at 6300 Deane Hill
Drive in Knoxville.
Our adult program has goals such as work skills learned, staying on task, following directions, remembering and following routines, and expanding verbal expression and new vocabulary related to being a part of a functioning greenhouse.
We include the opportunity for fun, social interaction with peers and volunteers ie. playing basketball, eating lunch together both on and off site, off-site events ie. Iams Nature Park, planting at a variety of projects in our community, pool party, special holiday parties and activities, visiting Island Home airport to learn about helicopters, etc.
We also learn about God by talking about our friends, families, helpers, plants, sun and water, and
thank Him for all he is and does for us.
Everyone likes to feel important; therefore, we are always looking for ways to give back to the
community by sharing flowers, helping others, etc. At this time, we work at the BLOOM Center
on Tuesday and Friday from 11:15-12:45 during the school year and then continue earlier
morning hours during June and August. We take a break during July.
It is my responsibility to recruit/ interview new adult participants and their parent or caregiver before enrolling in the program. We want their participation to be a good match both for the participant and the adult program in general. If the family and I both agree this would be a valuable part of their weekly schedule, I make sure that I have a clear understanding of learning styles, any fears, behavioral triggers, or health issues that could affect their participation.
Volunteers are very important to the success of the program so I talk with prospective
volunteers and inform them of our program mission, the type of tasks and interaction they will
have with our BLOOM friends who are either currently a part of the program now or may
possibly be in the future. Volunteers in our adult program love to work and play and laugh with
our special friends. No special skills are required. I provide support when some guidance is
needed or requested; but basically, we share ourselves with these who come so willingly and
have a great time together. Some of our volunteers are very knowledgeable about plants (not
me) and others come just wanting to spend time and laugh and learn alongside our friends.
As an important outgrowth of the adult BLOOM program, we have started a Sunday morning
class using curriculum designed specifically for adults with learning challenges. We want this
time to be fun and informative about the love of God and each person’s part in the larger plan
of God in this world. We started our class in January so we are discovering new ways to grow
and learn together. Many of our class members are not members of Central Bearden and leave
after our 9:30-10:30 class and go to their current worship services at other churches or stay and
attend our worship at 11:00 at Central Bearden. All are welcome!
If you and/or your family member are interested in becoming a part of the BLOOM adult
program or visit the Sunday morning class, inquiries can be made at any time. Contact Nancy
Reeves at email@example.com or 865-705-2218. Also, I can share with you contact
information of others who are already a part of one or both programs during the week and
Try us out. I think you will be amazed and so very thankful for this opportunity!