Grant allows Agape House to remodel group home - KAIT-Jonesboro, AR-News, weather, sports

Grant allows Agape House to remodel group home

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OAK GROVE HEIGHTS, AR (KAIT) – Agape House in Greene County got an early Christmas present this year.

The group, which helps women battle addiction through faith-based programs, learned recently that it received a $10,000 grant from State Senator Robert Thompson of Paragould.

The money has allowed the Agape House to remodel one of its group homes to better serve the needs of both its staff and the women it's trying to help overcome their problems.

"It's going to be nice for [the women], and it's going to be nice for us," said Sunny Curtis, the program's executive director, about the remodeled home. "This is a rewarding job we get to see miracles every day – every single day."

The contractors claim that they will be able to finish all the upgrades to the group home located in Oak Grove Heights sometime in early January. Jody Faulkner, the president of the Agape House board, has put sweat equity into the project, working with a few crew members to complete it.

"The first thing we did was to take things out," he said. "Take out all the old."

Faulkner said that meant ripping out all the old cabinets and replacing them with newer, more modern fixtures. Before those were installed, however, the workers ran into a number of issues behind the walls and under the floors.

"There were a lot of hidden things that we had to fix that we didn't know had a problem until we started taking stuff out," Faulkner said. "We ran into electrical issues, plumbing issues and flooring issues."

After replacing the flooring and securing the ceiling, Faulkner said the workers removed a wall in the living room to open up the space, which will serve as a central dining area.

"The $10,000 is fantastic," he said, "but you'll be surprised to find out just how fast that [money] disappears. When we get to the end of this project, we'll still be looking for more private donations that will help us finish this project out."

Once the work is done, Curtis said her staff can move their offices into the home as well.

"That house was in need of the remodel, so it's going to be very up-to-date," she said. "A lot of people have been working hard on it, and we can't wait to get it open back up."

The new dining area will also serve as a classroom for the women, like Jessica Lind, who are working to complete the four-month drug rehabilitation program.

"[The program] is very helpful," Lind said. "It's very faith-building and really once you get your faith good, it tends to make you have right living because believing right is living right. When you believe right, it's easier to live right."

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