More than 42 caring individuals with a desire to improve quality of life showed up last weekend to show unconditional love by volunteering their time to transform a gentleman’s home into a habitable and comfortable dwelling.
When Cleveland’s Mayor Tom Rowland first met the man and found out about the need, he told Bradley County Mayor Gary D. Davis and Mount Olive Ministries Senior Pastor Gary Sears about it. The three shared a genuine desire to help the resident. They also set forth to expand their vision to transform the lives of others in the community with needs.
According to Pastor James Sears the project has been being assessed for a couple of months.
With assistance from Bradley County building inspector Tina Bishop and the city of Cleveland’s Codes Enforcement the home was analyzed. Once the assessment was complete the goal to achieve a home makeover was set into motion.
Today, with the tremendous donations of materials and labor, the home that was once without power was rewired so the power would work efficiently. A few days ago there wasn’t any water and now it has hot running water.
“We put a new roof on the house which was leaking, repaired the falling ceiling with new sheet rock, rebuilt the floor by fixing a hole large enough for five men to fit into, cleaned and repaired the windows, painted the house and cleaned the yard,” said Pastor James.
Many of the compassionate volunteers referred to the workday as an “extreme home make-over” similar to the television show.
“It is amazing what can be accomplished when you get people who have the same mindset and likeness together,” said Pastor James.
“If other organizations and other churches can get involved and look around at the needs in our own area, they would be amazed at the need,” he said. “I’ve been on many mission trips and there are needs in the mission fields but we are a mission field right here with families living in unlivable conditions.”
Studies have revealed there is an increase in demand for financial and material support and more and more people are needing assistance on a short-term basis to get them back on their feet. It is the hope of those initiating the coalition of care that this successfully community project will inspire ambitious projects across the Cleveland/Bradley community.
To date, the top needs have been for food and medical assistance, home repair, counseling and utilities assistance. Some have simply lost their jobs and need a hand-up temporarily. Others have had a crisis such as a fire or need funds to bury a loved one.
Senior Pastor Gary Sears said the next project is to assist a single mother whose home is in need of repair.
“May we join hearts together, and may every church commit to do more through their local churches, and every citizen in our city and county pledge to help their neighbor as their self, doing whatever they can to make a difference,” said Senior Pastor Sears.
The “Care” initiative has been launched to assist in providing help and improving the quality of life for Cleveland and Bradley County residents. A team is being built who can analyze the needs. When it is fully operational those in need can call to find out if they qualify for assistance. Until then, those needing help or those wishing to donate supplies, materials, money or time can call 423-310-6156.