Joy Prom Winston-Salem is a full-scale annual prom for the special needs individuals in our community. Established in 2015, they welcome guests ages 16+, with any physical, developmental or intellectual “different ability”! Joy Prom guests enjoy a red carpet entrance, a “Glitz and Glamour” Pamper Room, shoe shining, food, dancing, photo booths, bingo, limo rides, themed decorations and more! This is the 5th year of Joy Prom Winston-Salem and the 2nd year being hosted by Calvary Day School. Last year there were close to 1000 people on Calvary’s Peace Haven campus during Joy Prom! Joy Prom is a totally FREE event for all attendees, and depends entirely on the generosity of our donors and volunteers. Below is a story from Jason Brittingham, one of the many volunteers from last year:

“To be honest, when I volunteered to be a part of the Joy Prom last year, I was a little nervous because I had never been a part of an event like this before and I didn’t know what to expect.  However, I had a feeling it would be very special to be a part of.  The day of the event I told my wife, “I think I will be alright as long as I don’t have to dance.  Please pray that I don’t have to dance.”  As the evening started, many other men from across our community and I anxiously awaited to be paired with our date for the evening.  Then I was asked by a lady to follow her.  She took me outside and I was introduced to not one, but two precious young ladies dressed beautifully in their prom dresses.  As I began to introduce myself and ask them some questions, one of their moms said, “These girls have been waiting for this evening all day.  They can’t wait to kick off their shoes and hit the dance floor.”  I almost died right there on the cement outside the gym.  I immediately began to pray as I knew that the Lord must have had a big grin on His face.  Within minutes, I had one girl on each arm and a crowd of adults and students cheered us all the way down the red carpet.  I felt like a king with two queens and smiled all the way down.

“These girls have been waiting for this evening all day.  They can’t wait to kick off their shoes and hit the dance floor.” 

It was electrifying!!  As soon as we came off the red carpet, we were led into the gym, which had been transformed into the dance floor.  These girls were ready to dance, and dance we did!  The Lord helped me that night on the dance floor and we had the best time dancing, eating, getting photos taken, having their hair and make-up done, and even taking a limo ride together.  The night was absolutely amazing and the most exciting thing happening across all of Winston-Salem by far.  As the night came to an end I said, ‘Girls, what would you like to do last?’ and I offered bingo since it was the only activity we had not participated in.  They turned me down and said, ‘Let’s go dance!’  So, that is how we ended the night, back on the dance floor.  During our last dance, I looked around and observed what was taking place all around me, and it was beautiful. There were men, women, and teenagers all with huge smiles on their faces, spending time together and all encouraging one another.  I now understood why it was called the Joy Prom: I came to be a blessing to others but left feeling blessed.  I came to encourage others but I left feeling encouraged.  I came to share love but I left feeling loved.  I couldn’t wait to get home and share my stories and photos with my wife and children.  I admit, I did have to do some explaining to my 9 year old daughter why her Daddy was dancing with two girls that were not her Mama, but it was a great teachable moment.  I am so thankful to have had this opportunity to serve. God was honored that night at Calvary!! 

This year’s JOY Prom will be on Friday, March 1 from 7:00-10:00p. Male and female volunteers of ALL ages (15+) are needed to serve in a variety of roles, including servers, set-up and clean-up crews and hosts/hostesses. Since each one of our special guests is paired with a host or hostess for the evening, this is our biggest area of need for volunteers. If you are interested in serving, you MUST pre-register due to security purposes by February 22. To learn more about how you can help with JOY prom this year or to make a donation, go to joypromwinstonsalem.org or check out the QR code below. We cannot wait to see you there!

If the special needs community has a special place in your heart, Calvary has several areas in which you can minister to these sweet people, be it through Bible Fellowship classes, family support, and more. To learn more, contact Ashlee Mabe at 336.714.5448.