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Hair bow ministry funds scholarship

Thorsby’s Lindsey Wood has been doing her part to help others since she began her Bows that Bless ministry effort at 11 years old.

Now, Wood is a junior in high school and has grown her ministry to the point where it will be able to offer a scholarship to a graduating senior in Chilton County.

The scholarship will provide $1,000 to the selected student to help with college tuition.

Eligible students will have to have spent time in foster care before the age of 14.

“One of my friends, who was in foster care, started telling me her story, and I learned that when kids enter foster care they don’t get to take their stuff with them because they’re so rushed,” Wood said.

According to Wood, people that were in foster care after 14 years old are usually eligible to receive assistance from the state, while anyone who spent time in foster care prior to that tend to have less options available.

In this scenario, children could have spent time in foster care but were since adopted or placed back with a family member prior to turning 14 years old.

“It tugged on my heart thinking that they don’t get as much help even though they have experienced some of the same things,” Wood said.

The funding for the scholarship has come from the sale of hair bows and T-shirts through the ministry.

Wood started Bows that Bless after watching tutorials of how to make hair bows on YouTube.

“Bows that Bless raises money for those who are entering foster care, but I wanted to do something for teens and college-aged students as well,” Wood said. “The hope is to get behind someone who has been in foster care and show them that it doesn’t hold them back. It’s not a liability, but instead something that has helped shape them into who they are.”

The initial batch of hair bows were sold, and the proceeds were used to buy backpacks for kids entering foster care.

Through the ministry, Wood has also bought car seats for the Alabama Baptist Children’s Homes and raised more than $8,000 since establishing the initiative.

She never imagined that the ministry would get to this point when she first started it at 11 years old.

“I started out just selling bows to my friends or as gifts to people,” Wood said. “I never would have imagined selling them at Peach Park’s boutique.”

According to Wood, her bows have even spread across the country, including some in California thanks to travelers stopping in at the Peach Park boutique and then spreading the word.

One of her goals is that one day the ministry reaches the point where it can not just help foster children in the county, but also regionally and nationally.

She received a lot of help and support along the way from Vanda Davenport, who used to be an office manager at the Alabama Baptist Children’s Homes.

If anyone is interested in purchasing hair bows or helping out the cause, they can leave a message on the Bows that Bless Facebook page or email bowsthatbless@yahoo.com.

The application to fill out for scholarship consideration can be found at form.jotform.com/bowsthatbless/2020-one-less-scholarship.