When you come to Collide, you belong and you are welcome! We want every Collide student to be a part of a caring community of people – people who will be their friend no matter what. Friendship in middle school can be hard, and walking through those halls can be discouraging. We work to help students develop healthy, Christ-centered, friendships.
CVCYouth stays busy throughout the year with a full calendar of fun special events, retreats, and opportunities to serve.
CVCYouth LifeGroups are a place for intentional discipleship particular to each grade and gender, guided by trusted and compassionate adult leaders at CVC.
We believe that the best way to start the day is with God. BASECAMP is a tool to help students with this practice each morning.
New this year
Eli was born in Charleston West Virginia. He loves the outdoors and especially the beach. Eli enjoys biking running, swimming, hiking, and adventures such as camping. As a kid, Eli grew up in Warsaw, Poland as a missionary kid. He has lived in the Cleveland area for 8 years. Currently Eli is a college student at Tri-C seeking a major in Biology to become a park ranger. One thing that he is really passionate about is music. Eli loves listening to different genres of music and enjoys writing music and playing worship at church. Eli loves the Lord with all of his heart. The highlight of this last year was going to Panama on a mission’s trip that blew his mind and ignited a fire to serve and reach others for Christ.
Jason is a husband, father, IT Nerd by profession, and weekend woodworker/handyman by passion. US Army Combat Vet. Lover of all things techy and wood! Jason is married to his wife Hannah, and has two kids, Alex and Isabella.
New this year
Monica moved here two years ago from Maryland and is currently in nursing school. She is super adventurous, loves exploring new places, and traveling. Monica has been involved with young adults for a year and felt called to explore CVC youth. Monica had a taste of CVCyouth this summer and is super excited to start as a Collide leader this fall. In her free, when’s she’s not studying, you’ll find Monica propagating plants, spending time with family and friends, and trying a new recipe.
New This Year
Kris is excited to be serving as a Collide leader for the sixth grade girls this year. Kris was born and raised in the Cleveland area and is a huge sports fan. She cheers for all the Cleveland teams, along with the Columbus Crew and Ohio State Buckeyes. Kris is a fifth grade teacher and is in her fifteenth year in education. She has been married to her sweet husband Jon for 19 years, and they have three kids. Their son is a high school sophomore, and their daughters are in eighth and sixth grades. The big thing she is thinking about currently is her son getting his temps and becoming a driver! Kris is thrilled to be able to build into the lives of her Collide girls and to help them grow in their relationship with Christ.
Julie was raised in the area and ventured West after college. She LOVES California but after getting married and having her 3 babies out there it was time to move home. Julie is a family girl… weeks are usually jam-packed with family dinners, kids sports, homework and family adventures. She is a creative person who loves to cook and is a graphic designer by profession. Julie enjoys coffee and anything sweet! She loves Jesus and felt the call to help with CVCYouth. She looks forward to sharing her faith, building relationships and helping young Christians grow in their journey with Jesus.
Jon is grateful to be a part of CVCYouth. He is currently serving as a parent-volunteer in Collide with the sixth-grade boys (class of 2026). Jon began attending CVC in 2002, and God used the environment at CVC to prompt a close walk with his Savior, Jesus Christ. Jon also met his wife Kristina here, and they were married in 2004. Together Jon and Kris have three children. Nathan is their oldest, and he is part of CVCYouth’s Collide ministry, Abby is their middle child, and Wendy is their youngest. Both of their girls look forward to being part of student ministry when they are old enough. Jon also serves as an accountant for National Interstate Insurance Company in Richfield. In his free time, he enjoys spending time with his family, vacationing to warm places, and anything else where he can be outside, as well as rooting for Cleveland sports teams.
Austin is a Cleveland transplant. He grew up on a farm near Hershey, Pennsylvania. He moved here in 2018 to marry his wife, Lauren Meyer. He immediately jumped into student ministry and has been serving with Collide and Impact for three years. Austin enjoys building relationships with CVCYouth students and encouraging them to grow in their relationship with Christ.
While Austin comes off as quiet and reserved it doesn’t take long to know that he laugh fills a room and he shamelessly dances every time a good tune comes on. Austin enjoys long naps, Star Wars, and never says no to ice cream!
Caroline Hotz is a former CVCYouth student who considers herself a “coffee enthusiast”. She enjoys reading in her free time and going to the movies. One of Caroline’s favorite things is to discover new coffee shops in every city she visits. Caroline began as a CVCYouth leader in her senior year of high school and has been a leader since. She has a heart for the next generation of students and loves pouring into the lives of the middle school girls. With the decision to stay local for college, Caroline feels called to use Northeast Ohio as her mission field and to continue to come alongside and disciple the young believers of CVCYouth.
Lisa Richardson is a past CVCYouth team member! She holds a degree in Educational Ministries from Clark’s Summit University (2020). If she is not working, you will find her drinking coffee, watching Disney+ or hanging with friends. Originally from Orlando, Florida, she is the youngest of 4 children, and an Aunt to three beautiful nieces.
Jack Hopkins serves as the Assistant Director of Ministry for CVCYouth. Jack graduated from the University of Toledo with a Bachelor’s in Marketing. Growing up in the Cleveland area, CVC became Jack’s home church during his freshman year of high school in 2014 through the youth program. Jack is a game fanatic, anything from the classic board game to sporting events, and is in love with all things Cleveland. He now functions primarily in the areas of outreach, service, and technical programming. He works closely with para-church organizations in the area and builds relationships with local school administration with the goal of inviting students to New Life in Christ. Jack works with our send team at CVC to help get students involved in serving inside the walls of CVC and outside the walls in the community. He also helps to organize worship and tech for all big events and weekly programming.
New this year
Hi! I’m Viveka. I’m new to being a CVCYouth leader. I’m excited to work with 8th grade Collide girls with Lauren and Holly. I’m not totally new to CVCYouth, though. I have two sons in High School, have already been a leader at a couple Frontlines as well as Winter Retreat. I fully know what I signed up for, lol! During the weekdays, I work at Kent State University, and my side job is an area coordinator for CulturalCare Au Pair (au pairs are international young adults that come to the US to work as nanny’s for 1-2 years to get a cultural experience). I see all these things as missional opportunities to tell people about the wonderful news of the Cross.
Lauren is the CVCYouth Director of Ministry. Lauren oversees all of the communication, event planning and execution, leader discipleship, and the logistical side of running the ministry of CVCYouth. Lauren most enjoys creating easy on-ramps for students in 6th-12th grade to be discipled to become more like Jesus through one on one relationships with youth leaders. Lauren served as an intern with CVCYouth in 2016 and was hired on staff in June 2018. Lauren has a B.S. and M.A. in counseling from Clarks Summit University. She says that her counseling degree “has become invaluable as I(she) walk alongside teenagers in some of the most formative years of their lives.” Lauren loves Cleveland and takes every opportunity to go exploring with her husband, Austin. The two never intended to stay in Cleveland long but the 216 has quickly become home to them.
Hi I’m Holly Top! I have been working with CVC youth for over a decade. It has been a joy and privilege to be a part of such an awesome ministry! I am currently co-leading upcoming 8th-grade Collide girls with Kristin Brauer. Apart from serving with CVCYouth you can find me and the students serving with the mobile pantry monthly. Missionary work overseas is also a big part of my life and I will be co-leading a trip to Indonesia this upcoming year. I am a Medical Assistant at Akron Children’s Hospital and love to do all the newborn visits. I coach kids CrossFit at APC in Wadsworth once a week. I have six siblings, three nieces, four nephews, and a cat. In my free time, I love to hang out with my family. We are big on games, walking/hiking, swimming, bonfires, really anything! I absolutely love the beach and everything that comes with it. Love going to the movies, skiing, and the zoo. Always need at least one cup of coffee in the morning. Favorite movie is Return to Me. The favorite band is LifeHouse. Favorite bible verse Hebrews 11:1. Favorite youth retreat is Frontlines. Favorite food Pad Thai. Favorite dessert Honey Hut Ice Cream. I love to travel and I’ll try almost anything at least once.