We believe God has a wonderful plan for every child and desires for them to discover their unique potential in Him. Our strategic initiatives include summer camp, sports programs and leadership development which impact children in the inner city of Atlanta. We are honored God’s favor has been on us as we serve in the name of Jesus Christ.
Leading Urban Kids into Excellence to be productive citizens and discover God’s plan for their lives.
Connect relationally with urban kids and lead them into a growing relationship with Jesus Christ through Summer Camp, Sports and Continuing Education.
Leadership – Discovering I can lean upon God, not government…
- Learning to build God-honoring relationships and independence
Uniqueness – Discovering God made me unique and special…
- Learning God desires that I reach my unique potential in Christ.
Kindness – Discovering the meaning of real love…
- Learning of the love Jesus Christ has for me and extending that love to others.
Excellence – Discovering I can pursue excellence in every area of life…
- Learning to serve, give, work hard and pursue academic excellence through the principles of ownership, personal responsibility and discovering the world beyond city streets.
Statement of Beliefs – The Luke Project, Inc. is guided by the core foundational beliefs summarized below. We also recognize that other peripheral issues are important but they are not listed as core beliefs. The Luke Project, Inc. provides programming to serve children from all nationalities, ethnicities and religions.
What We Believe
- About the Scriptures – The Holy Bible, Scripture We believe the entire Bible is the inspired Word of God and that it was written when individuals were moved by the Spirit of God to write the very words we read in Scripture. Therefore, we believe the Bible is without error, reflects truth for life and God is more than able to protect His message to us throughout generations.
- About God – The Triune God revealed in Scripture: We believe in one God who exists in three distinct persons: Father, Son, and Holy Spirit. We believe that Jesus Christ is the second member of the Trinity (the Son of God) who became flesh to reveal God to humanity and die to pay the penalty for our sin and become the Savior for the entire human race.
- About Salvation – Choosing to be a follower of Jesus Christ: We believe that every human being is born in sin and separated from God. The blood of Jesus Christ, shed on the cross, provides the sole basis for our forgiveness and freedom from the power and penalty of our sin. Salvation is available to every human being. Therefore, God freely offers salvation to anyone who places their faith, trust and eternal hope in the death and resurrection of Christ as sufficient payment for their sin.
- About Humanity – One God, One Path to Heaven Our Eternal Home We believe that all people were created in the image of God to have fellowship with him but became alienated in that relationship through sinful disobedience. As a result, people are incapable of regaining a right relationship with God through their own efforts or religious pursuits.
- About the Christian Life – Serving Others: As followers of Jesus Christ we should live for Him and not for ourselves by serving others. Obedience to God, application of the Scriptures and by listening to the Spirit of God, every believer should be transformed by the truth found in Scripture.
- Church, Community, City, Nation and the World – Love Better We believe that as followers of Christ we form the church which is the body of Christ, of which Jesus Christ is the head. We all need to grow and learn how to Love and Care for each other better. Our chief purpose is to “Glorify God and Enjoy Him Forever.”
- Jesus Christ is Unique – As Followers of Christ we are Transformed We believe Jesus Christ to be the virgin born Son of God who lived in flesh, died for the sins of the world, was buried, rose again, and ascended to the Father.
BOARD OF DIRECTORS
Directors – The Luke Project, Inc. – Atlanta, GA
Brian Davis – Board Member – Operations
Jeff Gorman – Board Member, President
Milton Crosswy – Golf Committee Chair – Corporate Gifts
Pastor Ngandu Lunda – Board Member and Spiritual Growth / Accountability / Leader Development
The Luke Project, Inc.
P.O. Box 115028
Atlanta, GA 30310
I have told you these things, so that in me you may have peace. In this world you will have trouble. But take heart! I have overcome the world.
We would like for you to pray for the children we serve or send us your prayer request so we may pray for you.
You may contact us at email@example.com
2.1 Ministry Background
Jeff Gorman founded The Luke Project in 2001 after working for seven years for World Relief, Inc. World Relief hired Jeff to develop and direct their national inner city outreach program for children and youth. World Relief’s prototype program operated out of West End Baptist Chapel in the underprivileged Atlanta neighborhood it was named after, West End. The program served children and youth living in the greater West End Community and those living across the street in one of the country’s oldest government housing projects, Harris Homes.
With the national outpouring of financial aid to the Red Cross after the terrorist attack of September 2001 (9/11), World Relief and many other U.S. based nonprofit organizations suffered substantial decreases in funding. To compensate for this reduction, World Relief eliminated most of its programs operating in Atlanta’s West End and decided to halt the nationwide roll out of the prototype after-school, summer camp and sports programs. As a result of these unfortunate circumstances, the First Baptist Church of Atlanta withdrew its collaborative partnership leaving the host church and the program Jeff founded to stand alone.
What at first seemed to be a tragic abandonment of children with significant educational and spiritual needs instead became a calling. Jeff felt led by God to continue to minister to them through a new organization. Drawing on his significant entrepreneurial experience which is detailed below, Jeff prayerfully filed for 501(c)3 status and drew a board of directors together. Just months later, in November of 2001, The Luke Project, Inc. was formed to help children discover God’s plan for their lives and grow into productive citizens through tutoring, sports and summer day camp.
2.2 Ministry Training
An Atlanta area native, Jeff started his first business at age seven selling vegetables and collecting sticks and pinecones for his father. Paid fifty cents an hour for the sticks and pinecones he collected, he learned early the value of hard work. Since then he has served as the President of Atlanta Design and Investment, Inc. (high-end residential design & construction) and Vice President of Gorman and Associates, Inc, (retail space planning design & services), having received his BBA in marketing from the University of Georgia. Jeff had a long and distinguished career in Atlanta’s design community with clients ranging from Opryland Hotel, Peachtree Windows and Doors, and Trust Company Bank, to having one of his residential projects published in Southern Living magazine. He believes building lives is an extension of building with wood and stone; but with eternal significance.
His lessons in hard work were also evident in Jeff’s sports career. He was only eleven when his little league football team won the league championship with Jeff as quarterback. He continued to play the position of quarterback in high school at Peachtree High in Atlanta. Jeff served on the leadership team and was noted as one of America’s Who’s Who Among American High School students. Raised by a wonderful family, Jeff did not hear the gospel of Jesus Christ clearly presented until he received Jesus at age twenty-six. Just a few years later, while attending First Baptist Church of Atlanta and still growing in his faith, he left his job with MillerZell, Inc. in retail layout and design construction. Jeff invested volunteer time with the Vacation Bible School that First Baptist was hosting through its church plant, West End Baptist Chapel, located in Atlanta’s poverty-stricken West End. Jeff was passionately struck by the desperate need for training and discipleship among so many children who did not receive positive life coaching at home. His two years of volunteer work were recognized by World Relief when he was hired to develop outreach programs for the children of the Harris Homes government housing project in West End Atlanta.
Having seen the benefit of the work ethic instilled at an early age and the soul-changing impact of dedicating his life to Christ, Jeff desired to see the youth of Harris Homes receive similar training that they might reach the potential God had for them spiritually, educationally and professionally. Jeff also gained valuable experience in developing new businesses, leadership training and years of playing sports, all of which were instrumental in helping him organize and lead World Relief’s prototype program which included tutoring, summer day camp, soccer, and basketball.
The new organization was named The Luke Project, Inc. for the seeming impossibility of the task ahead and the hope found in the gospel of Luke 1:37, “For nothing is impossible with God.”
The Luke Project’s first major obstacle was the evacuation and demolition of Harris Homes as the city of Atlanta planned to rebuild the apartment housing complex for mixed-income inhabitance. The primary difficulty was in continuing to involve program participants who had been dispersed throughout Atlanta, some even as far as the eastern and southeastern edges of the I-285 perimeter more than 10 miles away.
The result was a strategic shift in transportation means throughout 2001. Previously, children had been able to easily walk from their apartments to the church where programs were hosted. The Luke Project was now limited to involving those children who could be picked up in the 14-passenger van owned by the church. To expand its outreach, The Luke Project engaged the children to collect ONE MILLION pennies. They raised almost $2,000. Other donors, seeing the children’s hard work, gave the remaining $13,000 in funds during 2002 in order for the Luke Project to purchase its own 14 passenger van.
As Jeff grew in his faith, his desire to learn from other ministry leaders grew as well. Norita and Jeff decided as a family that a church change was required for their growth to continue. However, the final defining change was that the facility at West End Baptist Chapel would no longer be available for The Luke Project’s programs since Jeff and Norita were no longer Chapel members. This again led Jeff to his knees in seeking God’s direction. What appeared as the end instead became the launch pad for The Luke Project to find its primary means of outreach. The management at The Villages at Carver approached The Luke Project about hosting programs out of its resident services building and served as the home for the operations of the Luke Project until the first quarter of 2007, when they reallocated the space as a temporary leasing office for the senior highrise.
Jeff embarked on the mission to find a new home for the Luke Project. The main criterion was that it must be ideally situated to reach a maximum number of inner city, underprivileged children at minimum cost. Jeff’s prayers were answered when a supporter donated the use of 2000 sq. ft. at a remodeled warehouse facility in inner city (West End) Atlanta. The Luke Project was able to move in during the second quarter of 2007. This location now serves as the operational headquarters of LukePrep and LukeCamp, and houses the offices of LukeSports.
The Luke Project has expanded and standardized its programs. LukeCamp (Summer Day Camp ) is now a structured ten-week camp with educational lessons in the morning and Bible study and sports in the afternoon. LukePrep, our “Urban Institute of Continuing Education”, provides critical life and educational skills to some of the nation’s most educationally disadvantaged children.
In addition to program development, The Luke Project’s team has expanded to five individuals, consisting of full-time staff (salary & hourly), contract consultants, as well as year-long and summer interns. It has expanded its volunteer base to include local colleges, universities, and high schools. The Luke Project is continuing to build on its relationships with The Villages at Carver; RJ Russell, one of the Atlanta Housing Authority’s primary project managers; and IMS Management, the company managing the Carver housing community in South Atlanta. Over 1,000 children and youth have been impacted by The Luke Project, Inc. with many attending local Charter Schools. In 2004, The Luke Project founded KIPPSPORTS, enabling four area charter schools to participate in sports programming provided by The Luke Project, Inc. KIPPSPORTS was in response to a situation whereby charter schools cannot participate in the existing public schools’ athletics programs. KIPPSPORTS was renamed LukeSports in mid 2006 currently serving five schools.
The Luke Project’s ministry programming is unlike any other. Operated with the understanding that children need life training in order to become productive citizens seeking God’s purpose for their lives, each of The Luke Project’s programs is structured to help inner city children attain that goal.
Where secular organizations such as the Boys & Girls Clubs and the YMCA provide some educational assistance and many entertaining programs, The Luke Project understands that heart change comes with receiving Jesus Christ as Savior and Lord. Fundamental growth must take place in a person’s life before one truly seeks the potential for which he or she was created. The Luke Project therefore sees every program as an opportunity to train and not simply entertain children.
Some inner city churches provide after-school homework assistance, but their impact is localized. With 40,000 children living in spiritual, financial and educational poverty, Atlanta is ripe with ministry opportunity. The Luke Project’s goal is to design programs through LukePrep that are scalable, relevant, well-planned and financially sustainable. The Luke Project will place programs systematically throughout Atlanta and eventually beyond by placing programs in housing complexes populated with families at or below the poverty line.
Already lacking vital instruction at home and in school, these youth are desperate for the truth and instruction that will prepare them to be productive citizens. Therefore, life building skills including academic excellence and Christian character are fundamental for all of The Luke Project’s programming.
Without day-to-day examples of how to be productive citizens and having little to no accountability at home, these inner city children need the life training that The Luke Project provides. Statistics show the high propensity for inner city youth, with only television and their peers for advice, to frequently end up incarcerated or pregnant out of wedlock. Without the training necessary to apply for a job, open a checking account, understand the value of finishing high school and pursue a college degree, or to value waiting on physical intimacy until marriage, many of the inner city children we serve will never reach their full potential in Christ.