Thousands of miles and a total of 17 different college campuses is where Chris Wheeler and the Red Bus Project interns have traveled this spring, all to spread awareness and raise money for orphan care. The Red Bus Project launched in the spring of 2012 and is the college initiative of Show Hope, which was founded by Steven and Mary Beth Chapman to provide care for orphans and funding for families to adopt children.
So, what is The Red Bus Project? It is an actual red double-decker bus from England that has been converted into a mobile thrift store. They travel to colleges all across the southeast and hope to travel to even more colleges in the future.
“Not all students have money, but lots of them have stuff they can donate,” Wheeler said.
The funds raised from the thrift store go toward providing forever families to orphans. No long-term commitment is required, but in the future, The Red Bus Project wants to include events and training seminars to engage students who have a desire to help shed light on this crisis.
“Our goal is not to just swoop onto a campus, have a fun event, then leave and never be heard from again,” comments Wheeler. “We have a very intentional strategy in place to move students progressively toward deeper engagement in a lifestyle of orphan care. We’re asking them ‘What is your Red Bus?’ – a metaphor for specific actions they will take to help the plight of the orphan.”
“We’ve been thrilled by the response so far,” said Scott Hasenbalg, Executive Director of Show Hope. “Students appreciate an ‘out of the box’ way of helping care for orphans.”
To find out more and sign up to be a part of The Red Bus Project, visit redbusproject.org. Check it out and find out when they’re coming to a college or town near you!
Jennifer Hooks is a production editor for Lifeway’s Student Ministry publishing team. She’s a graduate of Mississippi College and devotes herself to helping teens and college students grow in their walk with Christ.