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A Brief History of Alpha

The Lord led Jack and Anne Snavely, founders of Alpha, through many circumstances, to children's ministry.  When they were in their mid-30s, they followed God's prompting to establish a Christian home in Kansas for at-risk, needy, and homeless children in the early 1970s.  They donated 5 acres of their own Kansas farm property in the country on which to build a 7 bedroom house (Alpha House) for children in need.  They began receiving children in 1972 in that house.  Later an additional 165 acres of adjacent wooded hills and pasture land became available and was purchased for expansion.

Among children typically served now at Alpha are those whose parents or guardians have sought help because there is a struggle with mental illness or disability by the parent, homelessness, a season of financial difficulty or family instability, or a period of military service or deployment; because the child is struggling with academic challenges that our school is uniquely designed to address; or because care-giving grandparents have found that they are physically no longer capable of keeping up with raising grandchildren later in life.  The children find a safe home at Alpha and are enrolled in our Christian school.  They are also given opportunity to heal from the circumstances that brought them to us as we work with them daily to meet each of their individual needs, and in the process, demonstrate and communicate the life-changing love of Christ to them.  Children, ages infant through eighteen, are welcome to stay with us at least a year, or even much longer, depending on the individual need. At this time, Alpha can nurture 12 to 16 children at a time, depending on the individual challenges and needs that are presented.

Living in the safe and nurturing environment at the Alpha Christian Children’s Home represents to these children a chance to heal; correct past mistakes; experience a Christian family's love & security; learn to respect one another; share in household responsibilities as a family, learning how to do laundry, cook, mow the lawn, etc.; gain a solid education; learn how to keep one's actions, goals, and accomplishments disciplined; and learn how a life with Christ as Savior and Lord will be full of blessing and purpose.

In the 1980s, Alpha's board of directors considered establishing a school with individual-based curriculum for the children.  Two years of attendance with a private school which utilized Accelerated Christian Education curriculum demonstrated that the children, who were dealing with variety of challenges, tended to flourish academically with this individual-based curriculum.  This curriculum also supported the principles of character being taught in the home, reinforcing a different way of thinking for these children who needed to see safety, support, love, learning, and a Savior in their lives.  In 1984 Alpha established a private school in the walk-out basement of the Alpha House residence, utilizing Accelerated Christian Education curriculum.  
In the mid-1980s, Alpha’s board began to look forward and plan for future expansion as the land purchases were paid off.  In the late 1990s, construction was completed on a two-story building, now called the Snavely Education Center, which hosts a central pantry, the new school learning center facilities, the central office, a shop area for vehicle & farm equipment repair and maintenance, and a recreation facility for the children.  In the early 2000s, the board started the initial groundwork toward expanding the ministry to eventually include multiple homes for children.  The first phase of this expansion plan was accomplished in 2014 with the opening of a second home, the Hope House residence for children. 

Jack and Anne Snavely directed the ministry with the Lord's guidance from its establishment in 1972 until declining health prompted their retirement in 2005.  They served as home parents, developed the property, and spread awareness of the ministry to interested churches, groups, and individuals.  Jack passed away in 2013; Anne continues to volunteer with the ministry as she is able.

Michelle Kincaid, a daughter of the Snavelys, grew up at Alpha from age 2, and returned from college in 1991 to serve daily for the Lord, handling the office workload involved with the mission (nonprofit children’s home and school).  Ms. Kincaid was named Executive Director in 2005, in addition to her other duties.  She has dedicated her life to rescuing children who have experienced adversity in their lives, and who are in need of a structured, loving Christian home.

Jeff & Devin Mulpas joined Alpha in 2008.  Jeff Mulpas, Director of Mission Development, is working as our liaison to interested supporting churches, businesses, groups, and individuals, while also developing the mission toward further expanded ministry.  Jeff’s wife, Devin, grew up at Alpha from age 3, and is thrilled to return and work on behalf of the kids here.  She is our Volunteer Coordinator, School Principal, and is working alongside her husband as they travel and visit across the Midwest.  Since their arrival, an unbelievable amount of fundraising, public/church relations, and good will have taken place.

Jim & Yvonne Fehlauer joined our ministry team in June 2014, ministering to children as home parents in the Alpha House residence, the original, beautiful country home that has offered hope and healing to precious little ones since 1972.  In addition, Jim teaches art, and Yvonne sign language in the children’s school.  Chuck & Mary Plant have ministered to children at Alpha since 2010, and are now serving as home parents in the new Hope House residence for children.  In addition, Chuck works around the grounds and ranch.  Patricia Sims is serving as the Education Supervisor for Alpha’s school, and Lisa Bond is their Paraprofessional.

You can partner with us to provide for the recent expansion in ministry for children by becoming a monthly financial partner.  For example, one hundred new partners supporting with $50 per month will get this second home completely funded and will bring hope to children who need someone to care.  Some can give more and others less – but we know that our goal is within reach.  Your gift in support of children in need will help when combined with others’ gifts to fund this expanded level of ministry!  Your partnership is vital and will help reach so many little ones for Christ, instill a fruitful education, and provide a structured & loving home to a great number of young lives who will seek help here over the years to come. 

Alpha Christian Church, School, & Ranch, Inc. dba Alpha Christian Children’s Home and School is a non-profit organization under the IRS Code section 501(c)(3). The ministry has a seven member Board of Directors, and voluntarily submits records to an independent CPA for annual audits.

Alpha Christian Children’s Home and School is located just outside of Perry, Kansas.  Alpha is 100% privately funded, and does not receive any state or federal funding for the children’s care so that Christ can remain the center of our mission. There is no fee for those we serve.  Therefore, the ministry relies on donations and volunteer labor to maintain and build on the 170 acres of property and meet the needs of the children who live here. There are two houses for children on the property and one staff house to maintain, as well as the Snavely Education Center at this time.

Donations of food and other items which one would use in the home, office, or school settings are always needed and welcome. Anyone donating items or services to Alpha receives a tax-deductible receipt for the value of the item(s) donated. Alpha is located East of Perry, Kansas, on US Hwy 24 to US Hwy 59 Junction at Williamstown; then 2 miles North on US Hwy 59 to 27th Street (gravel); then 1 mile East on 27th Street to the main Alpha Driveway (marked by a large rock sign) which is 1/4 mile long on the South side of 27th Street.

 

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