Thursday, June 25, 2015

Like Thursday Like Monday

The saying of the day, here in Athens, was "Thursday like Monday". As we started our fourth day of work after finishing a long day of fun zip lining yesterday, gaining the motivation to wake up early and work hard for the community was obviously difficult for a group of teenagers. However, looking back to the beginning of the week we could easily envision the motivation we held on that early Monday morning. So as we woke up at ate a delicious breakfast casserole our fearless leaders constantly reminded us "Thursday like Monday". The saying was especially important as The clouds finally broke loose this morning and all of our groups were stuck in a constant rain.

Our first work group was made up of Jack Dager, Maddie, Noah and Denise. For the morning shift they traveled to a women's house to do some lawn mowing. The four of them worked with two mowers and two weed whackers to tame an extremely unkempt lawn. The women was kind and opened up a little to the group about her family and her appreciation for the worked they planned.

The second work group of the day was made up of Teddy, Dan, Harrison, Nick, Meredith and Gayle. The six of them traveled to a trailer that is in need of supports, and a deck with a handicap ramp. The job included getting under the trailer to clear away trash as well as placing concrete support to prevent the entire structure. The group also started some foundation for the ramp and deck.

The third outdoor work group was made solely of Nathan who stayed on the Hannah house property to spilt some wood, to heat the house through the winter.

These three outdoor groups combined after lunch to work indoors. They traveled down the road to volunteer at a local thrift shop that is very special to the community. The thrift shop every month, picks a new non- profit to donate their proceeds to. Good Works is high up on their list so we paid them back by helping to organize different sections of their store.

The fourth group was made up of Doug, Jack White, Stefanie and Alex. Thee four of them stayed inside all day at the local Good Works shelter, the Timothy House, and painted some shelves as well as some other handy man projects.

Once again Carolyn and Mark worked at the Kids Discovery club.

This afternoon the group enjoyed many games of Basketball, Volleyball and our new Favorite: Taco Tag!!

Recap from Wednesday

The PPCers at the Kid's Discovery Club enjoyed "What In the World Wednesday!" They played an animal game with the children and heard from a presenter who was teaching the children about how to reuse and recycle to care for God's creation.

Another group went back to John's house and continued to chop wood for him to store for fuel for the winter. At the end of the day, the group also talked with John about his family and his tragic motorcycle accident.

Another group did repairs on Good Works' Hannah House (where the team is staying) and on the Good Works' Administration Building. They worked on doors and locks.

In addition, the group enjoyed an afternoon zip line tour. The enjoyed the X-Tour at Hocking Hills Canopy Tour. Check out what their experience may have been like by watching this video.

Wednesday, June 24, 2015

More pics from the week

Playing "Spoons" (a card game) during free time
Assembling a shower chair for Mary
Noah, Jack W., and Stefanie (with Ed giving guidance) installed a shower hose and assembled a shower chair so Mary can sit to shower and not risk falling. We also took out the toilet, added a layer of new plywood over the rotting floor boards, and reinstalled the toilet. And on multiple occasions took time to pray for and with Mary. Stefanie, Jack W., and Noah also sang a hymn for Mary.

More games during free time

A wood chopping crew pausing during work on Wednesday morning

Morning devotions

Each morning the team gathers with staff from Good Works for devotions.

Morning devotions
This time is intended to help the group see their service as an act of worship. The focus is educational about how God views poverty and the poor.

Summer Lunch

One of the ministries which the team is assisting with this week is Summer Lunch.

Summer Lunch is closely connected with Kids’ Discovery Club, a summer camp for local children. During the school year children are able to get a good meal from the school, but during the summer this becomes difficult for some families. Good Works helps provide a healthy, nutritious and tasty meal for the children. This meal is also available to anyone who wants a free lunch.

Tuesday, June 23

Recap and reflection by Harrison Smith

The difference between our lives in Maryland and the lives of the people of Athens has amazed us. 

Most of the work we are doing is maintain the houses and properties of people who can't do it themselves and can't afford to have someone else help. We continued to mow lawns today for people that can't get it done without help from Good Works. We also cleared mildew off of a house and painted it. We repaired the water heater of a lady fighting cancer who hadn't had hot water for awhile. 

Manicured lawns, clean houses, and hot water are standard in Potomac, but the reality here is Athens is that many people don't have these things that we consider basic. In Athens, there are people that work for months to earn enough for cars that many Potomac residents would consider more trouble than use. College students at The Ohio University throw away things that Athens residents then search the trash for. We were told to leave the broken water heater on the street corner, because it would only take a few hours for someone to find a use for it and take it.

The residents of Athens are extremely generous and clearly close to God, yet we are so much more fortunate. It is impossible to fully know what life is like here, but we are doing our best to understand.

Mark and Harrison cooking grits for breakfast

Alex mowing

Alex, Meredith, and Jack D. pause from mowing in the shade