(n.) A unified body of individuals

THE MCKPASSION COMMUNITY is a community where students identify and use their gifts, talents, and resources, through Christ, to help others in need.
Below are profiles of students who use their gifts, talents, and resources to make a difference to serve the poor in the Branson, Missouri area. More to come. Last updated March 16, 2010.

Annie Farr is a student at C of O and donates her time to volunteer with Jesus Was Homeless, a organization that feeds the area’s homeless.

In spring 2009, Annie Farr became aware about the needs in the community while attending a MCKPASSION awareness event. She talked with Christopher Welch, Chairman of the Census Count for Taney and Stone Counties and active community leader fighting poverty, and decided she wanted to do something to help. Annie decided to volunteer at Jesus Was Homeless. After volunteering with the ministry in the spring, that following summer she began to invite others students to volunteer. Today, Annie continues to faithfully volunteer and leads a carpool of students to the ministry weekly. When asked about her experiences, she says she has so many stories to share about the men, women, and children that live in weekly hotel rentals and that her heart has become more broken to serve the poor.
Read one of Annie’s stories:
Upload PDF:
Annie’s story 2010
Volunteer with Annie and other C of O Students:

WHEN? Every Wednesday, 5:30pm-9pm

Serving as College of the Ozarks Graphic Arts Club President, Jael McElvain uses her graphic art talents and resources to help fight poverty.

Jael McElvain found out about local poverty while talking with her friend, Kitling Alarid. Wanting to help in anyway, she volunteered her time to help organize MCK PASSION’s first awareness event. She continues to support MCKPASSION by printing and posting awareness flyers on campus and by encouraging and mobilizing students to use their gifts and talents to make a difference.

Jaimie is a student at College of the Ozarks and has used her gifts and talents to serve others in her community. After realizing the number of children in poverty in her own backyard, she decided to help children in her community by successfully starting a “Backpack Program”, a program that gives every child a free backpack full of food before the weekend. Then, in college, Jaimie assisted in MCKPassion initiatives to raise awareness about poverty. Currently, Jaimie works as a youth leader in her community. She mentors the youth and encourages them to recognize their gifts and talents and that they too, can make a difference.

Jonathan is a senior at College of the Ozarks and has a passion to serve others in his community. Jon explains he didn’t always have a desire to help others. When he first heard about the local poverty, he didn’t know what to do. He wrestled with finding time in his schedule of classes, homework, and friends to help in the community. One day, he almost decided it was too much trouble to make time. However, on the day of his intense struggle, a friend happened to mention MCK to Jon. Jon realized he wanted to join other student efforts to fight local poverty. In spring 2009, he began to work with MCK founder Kit Alarid and helped put together information packets on poverty and establish the mission and vision of MCK. Then, he traveled with MCK to Washington D.C. to train with World Vision on ways to end poverty and hunger at local, state, and global levels. Today, he works as a church youth leader in Blue Eye, Missouri where he is mobilizing and training high school students how they can use their gifts and talents to help people in need.

Chris Enss is a student at C of O and first found out about the poverty when working with YoungLife- a Christian outreach to youth. Chris uses his gifts of leadership and love and patience to work with the youth. He shares, “Most of our kids from younglife are from broken homes, with parents, or themselves, with a history of drug use. Most have moved to branson west from other areas of the country, because of the low cost of living in the area. Most live in what is referred to as the “Styrofoam ghetto” because the houses are so cheaply built that the walls consist mostly of styrofoam. Those that don’t live there live in hotels or with friends. All in all, though, these kids are without a stable living environment, and are given a distorted view of what love is, and what life is supposed to look like. And my favorite part of younglife is, we can mirror the love of christ in their lives, and we even help feed them once a week at club through the help of the church that has been supporting us.” Chris continues to work with these youth in need in the Branson area and is a fan and supporter of MCKPassion.

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