At the weekly staff meeting of the Office for Regional Conference Ministries (ORCM), the subject of the recently completed third and final building phase of Oakwood Adventist Academy (OAA) came up. The third phase involved the building of a facility that would house Grades 9-12.
Some of the staff had attended this historic event and had noticed that the academy had shared a list with its constituents about things that the school still needed. A discussion then ensued relative to whether there was anything that the ORCM staff could do.
ORCM Executive Assistant, Ms. Melonie Gurley was deputized to contact OAA Principal Mrs. Judy Dent, to discuss with her ORCM’s desire to help and how that best could be done. Ms. Gurley dialoged with Principal Dent and it was decided that ORCM would purchase a washing machine for the school.
While a washing machine is not ordinarily the first thing that would probably come to mind as it relates to the needs of a school, both the janitorial staff and the athletic staff have cleaning needs that necessitated having a washing machine on the school’s premises.
The next discussion was how ORCM would pay for the gift. ORCM’s budget comes from .5% of the collective tithe from the Regional Conferences. Early in the year, as a demonstration of support for Regional Conferences during the earlier stages of the coronavirus pandemic, ORCM made an appropriation equal to approximately 10% of its 2020 budget back to the Regional Conferences and the 2 West Coast affiliates, so funding the OAA gift was a little more complicated than normal.
After discussing the matter in a subsequent staff meeting, it was decided that the ORCM employees and the Regional Conference Retirement Plan employees would voluntarily contribute to the OAA gift and the remaining funds would come out of the ORCM budget.
A check was mailed to Oakwood Academy by ORCM Chief Financial Officer, Mrs. Phyllis Lee, and the washing machine was purchased. In the accompanying picture, Vice President Callendar, Coach Morton, Principal Dent (left to right) are showing Ms. Gurley the washing machine that had been purchased.