The mission of Communities of Transformation is to move families from surviving to thriving by developing personal leadership skills and building authentic relationships.
Meetings are held once a week, offering dinner and childcare for all. Classes and programming are designed to help build relationships, awareness, and skills. Contact your local site coordinator to learn more.
How can I get involved?
Congregations interested in learning more about this initiative should email cot.awfumc.org
What people are saying:
"One of the things that surprised me most about COT is how welcomed and comfortable I felt. Everybody was warm and inviting. So, I realized that it was fun to get together and share ideas. The support I've gotten since joining COT has really helped change my outlook. Before COT I wasn't getting as much done. Now, I've started actually accomplishing goals and really coming out of my shell. I didn't know what a blessing COT was going to be! I'm glad I tried it and got involved. It's just helped me organize my life! I'm okay and I'm on my way!"
"The things I like most about COT are meeting new people and socializing. The meals are good, and I like talking with everybody. Our 'good news circle' is one of my favorite parts of COT. We get to share what's new with each other. Sometimes listening to others is even more helpful than thinking about what I have going on. I've realized that we have a lot of the same things in common."
"COT has been a part of my life since 2015. Unfortunately, I do not get to attend meetings as much due to my career but it is still a part of me and always will be. Everyone there is family, and we support one another through the good and the bad times. COT made me focus on myself, which I have a hard time doing. It really helped me to grow as a person. No matter how long it is between me getting to attend, I'm always welcomed with open arms and made to feel so special. The positive atmosphere is one of my favorite things about COT. No matter what's going on in your life, or if you've had a horrible day, you cannot leave there without being lifted up and feeling better. Those Tuesday night meetings were my saving grace on more than one occasion while I was attending college. To me, COT represents how the church should be and how Jesus would have us to treat one another. People from all walks of life coming together in love and unity. It's a "come as you are" environment. We live in a society full of negativity and division, but COT is just the opposite of that. Everyone there wants the very best for one another. Where else do you experience that? For instance, many of the volunteers have supported me outside of COT. They attended a speaking engagement I was involved in, attended my college graduation, and the list goes on and on. They'll never know how much that means to me!! We often forget that many people do not have a support system or anyone to turn to in a time of need. That's one reason this organization means so much to me, their support. Where can you go and be loved just for being you? No one wants or expects anything from you, they just love and care for you. They genuinely care and want to help you be a better you. You don't find that much in this 'me, me, me' society that we live in. My hope is to one day become a volunteer if my schedule ever allows it. I will forever be grateful that I was introduced to COT and gained a whole new family."
"I came to COT as a very shy and to-myself type of woman. I really didn’t want to, but my sister insisted that I should. I decided to come and met all the volunteers and Mrs. Rosaland. Everybody was nice and very polite, so I decided to take the [Awaken] class. At first, I didn’t want to open up and tell the class my business, but then I realized we all had something in common. Then it became easier to talk about my personal life. COT taught me how to love myself and how to manage my money. COT is filled with so many wonderful people who will go out of their way to help you in any way they can, and it has changed my life for the better."
"I was working as a childcare provider for COT, and I thought it would be something I would like to do. The week I was supposed to start I got sick and was hospitalized. The following week my son was hospitalized with pneumonia. I began to think maybe this class was not for me. But I wanted to join so I did not give up. (What God has for you is for you and this class was for me.) Communities of Transformation helped me to take a moment to remind myself that regardless of my current situation, I was doing a great job. They helped me to realize that I can only do so much and that I must give myself more credit. They also helped me to realize that growth is constant. The [Awaken] class helped me to find me when I was at the lowest point in my life. I was lost and broken and needed to reconnect with me, and that is exactly what I got from COT. I not only found me and started to become a better person I also gained a family who loves and accepts me for who I am. I was taught how to listen and focus on my dreams and how to go after them one by one. They never sugarcoat anything, and they never told me it would be easy, but they always let me know that if I need them, they were there. Every meeting I attended, I was greeted with a warm smile and received with a genuine hug before leaving. The class was life transforming, and I love my COT Family, and I am forever grateful for all the light and love of God I experienced at COT."
"Many people feel that they are living a sad life. A life full of dead ends and self-doubt. The feelings of emptiness and depression can be very heavy and a burden for many to carry. A community can be such a powerful tool in these times. Bringing people together to provide strength, courage, hope, and support can make a huge difference in someone’s life. Having a community can bring a person who is... hopeless... to be able to accomplish anything. On any given day people pray and hope for change in their lives. Being able to change choices or paths taken in life can be challenging. In life seeing the tree for the forest is not always easy. Communities of Transformation provided skills and services, including hope, to help me take the steps needed for positive change and transformation in my life. Since joining the COT Family, I have seen my life change in so many ways. I have a wonderful career with Publix, and I have a college education and live on a budget. If you would have asked me five years ago, I do not believe I would be where I am today."
"I have met some awesome people here at COT; I should say, family. I really look forward to coming on Tuesday night COT because it gets me out of the house and I have an opportunity to spend time with my new family. The twelve-week class was fantastic. I learned to think out of the box, how to budget, and how to look at things differently. COT has been so supportive - like a family."
"COT has been a place of personal growth, one of stretching me and who I perceive myself to be. When I was first introduced to COT, I wasn't really sure if it was the place for me. I had already achieved some personal goals in my life that made me feel I was overqualified for COT; not too good for, but because of those accomplishments I would be looked at differently--like why is she here?-- but thankfully I was wrong. When I started the program I began to see that COT concentrated on growing you as a whole person, not in just one or two areas. When I went through the program I was in a place where I felt stuck. I wasn't moving forward, I wasn't moving backward; I just wasn't moving. I knew I was nowhere near where I wanted to be in life, but I wasn't quite sure of where I wanted to be or how to get there. COT helped me to focus on me in a way I hadn't in years and gave me direction and tools to motivate me to get moving and not just exist. I had to concentrate on me and really look inward to see who I was and where I wanted to be. I couldn't let a few failures in life define who I was and keep me from moving in a new direction. I can't say I am where I want to be, but I can say I am in a much happier place. On Tuesday I look forward to seeing a lot of smiling faces and people who are genuinely happy to see you. You are able to leave the cares of the world at the entrance way and be recharged by all the positive energy. This helps to keep you encouraged. I have an 8-year-old and she loves our COT family. She is always excited about going and makes me get up and go even on the nights where I am just exhausted; however, when I get there I am glad I came. I value the closeness and fellowship our group has created. I know had I not become a part of the wonderful community something of great value would be missing from my life."
“Communities of Transformation is a way to help you actually build a better bridge to the tomorrow that you’re looking for.”
“I feel renewed inside every time I come to Communities of Transformation.”
“Communities of Transformation is a positive place where people help other people through the obstacles of life.”
“Communities of Transformation is… where you meet good people with good and positive hearts.”
"Communities of Transformation helped me find who I wanted to be. It helped me align my thoughts and actions with who I was meant to be and wanted to be. It showed me that I can choose who I want to be and act accordingly."
“You don’t get to do this when you go on mission trips or give money, or you help at the soup kitchen… Those are all good things, but the long term is what we’re looking at with Communities of Transformation.”
“Many initiatives address the symptoms that result from living without enough resources, but they don’t address the root causes. Communities of Transformation seems to me to be one of the most effective ways to address the root issues.”
“There are so many things out there where we may help for a little while, but it’s short-lived, and you’re doing it over and over again. This is similar to education in that the benefits you gain from it are long term and lasting. You’re helping people move to...where they can be self-sufficient… This has a ripple effect through the whole community. It’s a way to make a difference that really lasts.”