January 14, 2021
Adam Lopez, Revive Community Church
Driver of Change: Interview with Adam Lopez, Revive Community Church
Helping the Community
When did you get involved with your work at Revive Community Church?
Adam: Our church’s slogan is "Blessed to be a Blessing" and one of our visions has always been to be the church of influence in that community, especially in El Rio. El Rio is a 99% agriculture population, with underserved and under-resourced families. That was the inspiration and passion behind our wanting to get involved in the community, to really help the needy families.
I believe it was in 2012, when I officially took on the role as community director.
What is your passion for working in the community?
Adam: My passion is servicing the needs of the families and educating them and bringing different resources to make navigating life a little bit easier and less stressful for them. It is to have a long-lasting impact with these families. We want the community to see our church as that church of influence, that church of change, that church of impact and refuge. That is the passion, that we can make a difference outside of the walls of the church.
How are you specifically addressing issues of health equity in your work and your community? How are you making a difference?
Adam: That is a very important topic that we take with a lot of importance and urgency with our church. We have taken different approaches when it comes to health equity, education and awareness. First and foremost, we have been a strong partner of Ventura County Public Health for many years, and our church has hosted nutrition classes, exercise classes, health fairs and health workshops. We have partnered with Logrando Bienestar to do some intake information on families in need, and provide the necessary information for them to make wise choices. One of the most important things we have done is partner with Every Mind Matters, called 'Sanamente', to provide mental health awareness and suicide prevention. We received a grant from them for our church to be able to host seminars and workshops and work with troubled teens, especially in the demographics of the underserved, under-resourced, Hispanic ethnics, which is 99% of the population in El Rio.
So, we have taken many different approaches when it comes to health and how we educate the people, how we get information to the community and not just our church members. We also have collaborated with VCBH and VCPH on various community events.
What are the areas that you hope to make changes in?
Adam: You know the retention part of it is key, what I mean by that is we can give all the information that we want to the community, we can give the resources, trainings, seminars and educational tools, but, how do we hold them accountable, how do we know individuals have retained the information and actually doing changes in their personal lives? So, one of the areas that I want to change is that accountability aspect of it, how we are going to measure that what we do is actually effective. Like, yes we have a lot of events and yes, we provide a lot of resources and content and material; but, we need to have some type of follow-up system with these families on a continual basis, not just a one-time connection and we are done, and we must work on the follow-up and accountability, the consistency of constantly working with these families and individuals to make sure that they actually do make a change in their lives. That is the biggest area that I think we need to change.
Tell us one thing about you that helps us get to know you better?
Adam: Just one thing? One thing that I can say that would get to know me better is this: that what drives me in life is not positions, it’s not titles, it’s not money, it’s not even my accomplishments or my kudos, what drives me is the sense of self accomplishment that what I do is having a long-lasting effect in people’s lives. I’m very selfish in that area where I don’t care about me; I am very unselfish about me like I want other people to get the training. If it’s a team effort I don’t care if I am the master mind behind something, if it’s a team effort and we get the job done I don’t care who gets credit, it gets done and we have a life changing opportunity with families. And that is the one thing I can say that maybe would get you guys to know me better.
If you could give a closing remark for or words of inspiration for the community during this time, what would it be?
Adam: I would like to tell the community that during these times of uncertainty and a lot of devastation going on that even with the little bit that some families have or the areas that we are lacking we should be grateful. You know, if you have a healthy family during this time, that has not been affected, you should be thankful for that; that you have a home, a roof over your head, you have clothes, you have food, you have a job, you have a car, transportation. Let’s not take those little things for granted because they are huge and if we have the opportunity to be a blessing to somebody and lend a hand and help someone, please don’t hesitate, lend a hand and help someone who really needs it.
Revive Community Church