Meet some of our leaders and learn more about what drives us as an organization
.- Kids that love the outdoors or desire the opportunity to experience it. They may not know that they have that passion until they get out and try it.
- It doesn't matter whether the kids have a place to hunt or need a place to hunt; the important part is that they want to be a part of the program. We desire to create an opportunity for them to be around other kids that love to hunt, where they can make friends and grow their relationship with God.
- Kids do not have to attend church where our CCO meetings are held in order to participate.
- Kids can come from any type of home life (single parent, divorced, married, no parents, raised by grandparents and more). This does not matter to us. CCO is here for all kids that desire to be a part.
-Kids can be from ages 7-18. The only time age plays a factor is in some of our hunts, and those are based on maturity. (Safety, ethical shooting and willingness to sit for long periods of time)
-Parents are allowed to be a part of the organization as well. We love providing opportunities for good quality family time. The main thing we ask is that you participate in our bible studies and activities too. Also, if you are a parent and want to be involved, we ask that you give your child space to be able to make friends and learn. The only way that the program can be successful for your child is if they have freedom to enjoy it.
-Adults that love God and the Outdoors can come and serve by volunteering.
* The only rule we have is that everyone that comes must be a part of the ministry side of what we do and not just use CCO as a place to hunt or fish.
Our goal is for Committed Christian Outdoors to be an organization that kids can grow up being a part of! Take a hunting club, fishing club, a form of scouts, and church and mix them all together and you have CCO! We want to create a fun, safe environment for kids where they can learn and experience the fun of the outdoors. Most importantly, while in this environment, they will learn good morals and learn the importance of a committed relationship with Christ.
Committed Christian Outdoors will hold meetings twice a month, to help keep the kids involved and learning. We will also hold events year round that the kids can be a part of. There will be two types of events: Open – where anyone is welcome to come, and Scheduled – where the CCO leader will communicate with parents to schedule the child’s hunting or fishing date.
Committed Christian Outdoors will always promote an environment that is: loving, safe, clean, supportive, friendly, motivational, committed, educational, helpful, and uplifting.
We hope that kids will come be a part of CCO and continue to stay involved long term. Our hope is that once they graduate and move into the adult world that they will want to come back and volunteer.
We want kids to know first and foremost that they are loved by God! Because they need to know that He has a plan for their life and that He desires a relationship with them.
Our hope is that by teaching them this information that when they become adults they will not leave their faith behind. We feel that if they know how much God loves them, then when they make mistakes they will run to God for answers and comfort. For many their view of God comes from a place of judgement, not from love. So when they make mistakes it causes them to run from God, feeling embarrassed and ashamed. Leaving them to try and figure the problem out on their own or with people that will not give them good Godly advice.
Here are some stats that show the need for this program:
88% of children in evangelical homes leave church at age 18
61% of today’s young adults had been churched at one point in their teens
70% leave the faith in college, only 35% of that number eventually returns
3 out of 5 young Christians disconnect from their churches after age 15
Those are just a few of the statistics that break our hearts and fuel this ministry.
We use our love for the outdoors as a platform to share our message on commitment because to us there is nothing better than seeing kids find success in the outdoors. This is also a great effort in conservation because we believe kids that find success in the outdoors will continue to pursue their passion for it when they are older.
Robert founded CCO in 2015 after feeling the call to Ministry. In August 2014 he made the decision to put God first in his life and a few months later he heard a message about Commitment that God used to change his life. Not long after that message he felt that God was calling him to share that message of commitment with others. Not sure yet of that calling, he kept working at his current job and trying to figure it out. Months later, after not making any progress toward this vision, Robert made a bold move that put Committed Christian Outdoors on the map. He quit his job to pursue the vision. It seems crazy, but he knew that he was pursuing something that he was being called to do. A few months later, the Committed Christian had it's first kids deer hunt. After that deer hunt, he knew that God was allowing him to use his passion for the outdoors as the platform to share the message about Commitment. The Monday after that first hunt Committed Christian Outdoors was born!
Meet Nicki and Tommy Piland. They are two of our leaders for CCO and they pour a lot of their heart and energy into this ministry. Nicki helps lead our girls and takes care of a lot of behind the scenes stuff for us. Tommy heads up a lot of our activities at the meetings and is one of our main guys out planning hunting and fishing trips. We are very thankful for them and they always go above and beyond to help make sure each child feels welcome.
Meet Les Hoy, to say that Les is one of our most popular guides would be an understatement. The CCO kids and teens love him to pieces and always request to hunt with Mr.Les. Les has been with CCO since we started and we are thankful to have his help. We are certain that if you come and join us at an event you will find Les to be one of your favorites too!
Dwayne Mercer came on board in 2020 and has made a huge impact. Dwayne's passion and knowledge of the outdoors has helped so much in planning and preparing hunting and fishing trips. His passion for the Lord and his committed prayer life have made a big difference in our planning and fundraising. Plus the kids love him and his cool truck and we couldn't be happier to have him on our team!
Rodney Middlebrooks has been here since the beginning. When Robert came to Rodney in the summer of 2015 to tell him the idea he had about taking the kids hunting and fishing and sharing the commitment message with them, Rodney was the one who said, "You won't believe me, but I just told my pastor last night that there is a need for an organization just like this". This was confirmation that we were on the right track. Rodney is another one of those behind the scenes guys that helps encourage and push this vision to its fullest potential.