Volunteers From Across The U.S. Help Out In Region 8 - KAIT Jonesboro, AR - Region 8 News, weather, sports

Poplar Bluff -- Heather Flanigan Reports

Volunteers From Across The U.S. Help Out In Region 8

July 13, 2004 -- Posted at 5:27 p.m.

POPLAR BLUFF -- If you thought kids were taking it easy this summer, like laying out by the pool or spending time with friends, you might be surprised at some out-of-towners here in Region 8.

One group of kids are working hard to improve the lives of the elderly, handicapped and low income. 

“We’re building a porch and a wheelchair ramp and a regular stair step access,” said Charles Hardy, an adult volunteer.

“I appreciate them coming out here because I really can’t do this,” said Larry Francisco as he

watched a group of teenagers work on his house.

 

Francisco is one of many Butler County residents whose life is getting a little easier thanks to a large group of teenage volunteers.

               

“It’s been gratifying getting to help people and getting to meet new people.  I would encourage people to do this,” said teen volunteer Jake Wise.

 

Jake is just one of the 800 volunteers from 14 different states that is working to repair houses for the elderly, disabled and low income. 

 

Volunteer Carly Anderson came from Salt Lake City to help volunteer.  She said she didn’t mind the Missouri heat and humidity as she used a level to straighten a beam.

 

“I just wanted to do it because it sounded like a lot of fun and I wanted to serve my church and I wanted to help the community,” said Anderson.

 

The program is called Group Work Camp and it’s sponsored by the Butler County Community Resource Center.  Each group has an adult leader that supervises five kids.  The volunteers come from all over the United States and while in Butler County, they are being housed at the 5th and 6th grade center in Poplar Bluff.

               

“These are Christian youth from all over the country and it’s a chance for them to be a service to others so it helps both the residents and the kids get involved in service,” said Robert Sutton of the Butler County Community Resource Center.

               

“I’m proud of them.  I’m glad to get help like this.  Years ago, you couldn’t get help.  Now you can and it’s nice.  It really is,” said Francisco.

              

The volunteers are  using $25,000 dollars of equipment and are working on over 140 projects during their week-long stay in Butler County.

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