Former Community Club Students Join NYA Foundation

by Tom Karr, Member, Board of Directors, NYAEF

The New York Avenue Educational Foundation has elected two former Community Club students – Natasha Dupee and Khufu Edwards – to its Board of Directors.

Natasha, who earned her B.A. from GWU in 2012 and her M.Ed. from U-Missouri-St. Louis in 2014, is Senior Disabilities Services Associate at GWU, and was just elected as an Advisory Neighborhood Commissioner for her Southeast D.C. neighborhood. Khufu is a 2019 graduate of West Virginia University, where he had a double major in Finance and Management, and is an Investment Analyst at PGIM Real Estate. Both participated in Community Club while attending the School Without Walls in D.C.

Since 1984, the foundation has supported Community Club and other organizations that tutor, mentor and empower students throughout Washington, D.C. Through its grants, it has helped more than 750 students from Community Club (its primary grantee) set a course for success in school and throughout life. For more about the NYAEF, please go to

What’s Going On: Community Club Goes Virtual

by Paul Dornan

Last Thursday, Community Club entered its  59th season of tutoring and mentoring D.C. public school students in a virtual mode. Like all other ministries of the New York Avenue congregation during the Covid pandemic, this fall it will not gather in the church itself. Rather, both tutors and students will “gather” in the confines of their separate homes and meet virtually. 

How it Works. Using the Zoom video meeting platform, each Community Club leader assigned to a class first brings her/his flock together and then assigns each tutor/student pair or small groups to a breakout room.  There each pair does exactly what would have done if they had met in the Peter Marshall Hall:  Work on and review homework assignments and on math and language skills; prepare for the SATs; draft college essays and applications; view educational materials; and just talk.  The shared-screen feature of Zoom permits student and tutor to share math problems, textbook explanations and draft paragraphs online. Moreover, members of the Math/Science Zone will be only a request away from helping any pair who needs some help with math and science questions.

Of course, not every aspect of Community Club can be replicated on line. There will be no common meal before the Club starts and no camp at Prince William Forest Park this fall. 

However, the Club will continue to award Stay-in-School Scholarships to our high school students who maintain good grades and regular attendance in study hall and College Scholarships to graduates now in college.  Over 40 of our current college students met virtually together in June to discuss college survival strategies in this new world of distance learning.

Keeping the “Community” in Community Club. How can we keep the “community” in Community Club during a pandemic?  That’s a challenging question for us all.  Community Club fortunately can claim a wonderfully committed and resourceful leadership that is keeping that question foremost in their minds as they grapple with the task of how to keep the essence of Community Club intact until we can all meet again on the fifth floor of the church.

In the meantime, we welcome new tutors.  If you are interested in that possibility, please contact Phil Telfeyan,, to join Club orientation any Thursday evening starting at 6:15 PM. 

For more information on Community Club, go to our website at

Congregational Sunday: Mission Fair

20190929_102336Today, we celebrate your special participation in New York Avenue Presbyterian Church’s Stewardship Campaign for 2019 and 2020 – what impact you have made and will make on our programs and mission.

Sometimes just a bit of history can put how we got here to this Share Fair – and to our Stewardship Campaigns each year in perspective. Philanthropy and giving can be traced all the way back to Cotton Mather in 1662 who said “Let no man pretend to the name of a Christian, who does not approve the proposal of a perpetual endeavor to do good in the world.”

Voluntary charitable organizations established by religious groups originated in the colonial era and in the mid 1700s, Benjamin Franklin “trained” early Americans in giving for charitable causes and civic benefit.

Presbyterians as a domination were a major part of colonial life as far back as the colonial war. And in 1789 during our first General Assembly, our earliest national church members emphasized the connecting nature of our church and encouraged educational, missionary, evangelical and reforming work.  Outreach mission to Native Americans, African Americans and populations all over the world became a hallmark of the church. This broadened to women’s issues civil rights and other social justice issues along with diversity in congregations.

There is an inherent belief in our core values that giving transforms the giver, making meaningful contributions in the aggregate collectively makes a real difference in the life and expressions of true partnerships and making an impact, for our church and ourselves as members of Christ’s body.

Support of our mission as manifested in our spiritual nurture to us as members each Sunday assures continuous support in our daily lives and decision making; informs and reinforces our moral compass. In tandem, our support assures that staff and volunteer solidarity and mission outreach like you see represented here are expanded.  

Giving to churches by Americans continues to be the largest sector by far of all giving, more than 31% of the total given each year. We join hundreds of thousands of other Christians in supporting so altruistically the work of Christ in our own lives and in the lives of those we serve in our community and the world.

By your gifts your dedication, your thoughtful generosity, you make a difference at New York Avenue Presbyterian Church. Your gifts help us open our doors every day. Your gifts help support our very special ministers, and make our wonderful choir and music program, the Radcliff Room Ministry, Community Club, Cuba Partners, McClendon Center and McClendon Scholars, and Kenya Partnership living breathing impactful and beneficial programs that touch the lives of many every week, every month.

For the Stewardship Campaign, please join with us again for 2020 in making a profound difference in the world; we are grateful for all of you who have stepped forward thus far, and who give of your time and financial resources here.  

This church – and Christ’s love and work – provide strength and spiritual sustenance in your lives. Your generous giving reciprocally to this resource that helps so many not only provides invaluable financial partnership in our programs – but also provides incalculable well-being in our own hearts and minds, each day, all year.

Laura Brouse-Long, Stewardship Co-Chair20190929_100947

57th Annual Community Club Award Ceremony and Graduation Pictures

Amy Gillespie receives a special award from Community Club.

Titi wins the tutor of the year award.  Titi and her student, did the presentation.

Kasey Kelly receives a “Thank you” from Tom Karr and Shamika Bradey

Molly Smith presents and explains the Dornan Scholarships.


Paul Dornan and Molly Smith smile for a pic!


Susie Campbell and Susan Baumbach


Tutor pairs

Tutor pairs

Tutor pairs

Tutor pairs