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The Door has been a part of the BA community for 10 years.

Emalee Strong

The door has been a part of the Bellwood community since 1998, which is 22 years of establishment. That may not seem like a long time, but to founder Dave Taylor it is. The Door has been a center for community outreach, impacting the lives of hundreds of B-A students, some who are in need of parental guidance, some who go for the fellowship, and others looking for spiritual inspiration.

The BluePrint asked Taylor a few questions about the door for a special addition to B-A History 101.

Blueprint: How long have you been a part of the door? 

Dave: 18 years.

Blueprint: Where did “the door” name come from? 

Dave:  A teen center in inner city Baltimore that George Palmer the founder visited and the door is supposed to be a doorway to a better future.

Blueprint: What made you want to work/run the door?

Dave: I had worked with all the teens at camp for 6 years and he felt that God called him away from being a pastor and called him to be a part of the helping and rescuing of teens again he had past experience with teen centers and helping at risk teens has always been a part of his heart.

Blueprint: How was it like back then? 

Dave: We had a lot of difficult bad behaviors and the building was robbed and vandalized multiple times. There was very little for the kids to do and no money and we didn’t serve meals unless someone brought food over.

Blueprint: How is it now? 

Dave: We have very good things for kids to do. We have increasingly supplies of food and healthy food and now more than just one person on staff we have two camps a year and the town loves what we do now unlike when we first started.

Blueprint: What have been a few challenges while running the door?

Dave: Trying to get people to donate not just supplies

In the early days we had fights with drug dealers when we’ve had kids attempt to take their own life or kids have died after leaving the door.

Blueprint: What was it like during Covid? 

Dave: We had to get creative and we have always thought it would have been a good community food kitchen. We were prepared. We never missed a day serving kids and increased the amount of food being sent home with kids throughout the pandemic.

Blueprint: What is your favorite part about the door being a part of the Bellwood community? 

Dave: I love the community spirit and all the kids being all in one school and all the kids can walk a short amount of time and not have to walk far and over 20 years the community has come far more supportive of what we do.

Blueprint: What are your future hopes with the door?

Dave: I have asked god to give me a total of 5 doors and a camp of our own that really every town in America or something like it for their kids.

Blueprint: What are some of your favorite memories while working at the door? 

Dave: Definitely all the camps and building stuff loved the times to talk kids out of bad decisions and love introducing kids to God.

Blueprint: Would you say the door impacts students(that attend) lives? 

Dave: Yes of course I think they’re impacted for life.

Blueprint: Did the door impact you? 

Dave: Yes it really helped me change the man I was and made me a better father and showed me how to love difficult people better.