A very common sight in the hills; a family of five living in the windowless basement because they can't afford to finish the real living space.
Our Mission- The “How”- Part 3… Home Building and Repair
For more than a decade we have hosted visiting mission teams from across the nation. These teams, through their dedication and efforts, have blessed McCreary County with their blood, sweat and tears. Most of our groups have been construction-oriented. Home building and repair allows for a tangible goal to be achieved. After working on a construction program, you can stand back and relish the fruits of your labor. There are some inherent problems with construction-oriented mission trips; they are by nature an effort which requires a higher level of skill, they are expensive to maintain, and they require an immense amount of logistical work for the teams and for Hills and Hollers Ministries. Couple this with the fact that our ministry focus is changing and growing to reach many more of those in need. A building project blesses one family. A Community Closet blesses hundreds of families. We encourage our existing and new teams to explore how they can be part these new ministries. For example one of our teams will host a Science Camp next summer for the kids in the County.
Yet, the need for help with their homes is ever present in the lives of the poor. While we still personally coordinate home repair projects for a few “small” mission teams, we believe that by partnering with other organizations that are already positioned in the construction-oriented ministries, we can help care for the needy in a greater and more efficient manner. We are developing a wonderful working relationship with the fine folks of Appalachian Service Project (ASP); http://asphome.org/. Their mission, like ours, is based upon “relationship, with a little construction mixed in”. ASP secures and directs the human, financial and material aspects of home repairs for the poor, accomplishing this work through hundreds of willing young people and led by compassionate and skilled adults. We help to identify the most serious of home repair needs in our community, advising and assisting our ASP partners along the road of their ministry.
We still desire to enjoy spiritually intimate times with small mission teams. For us, these mission moments tend to be as much a period of spiritual refreshment as physical accomplishment. However, our partnership with ASP opens the door to an increased number of relational opportunities with our impoverished neighbors. We feel that by working with ASP even more will be done to continue to build God’s Kingdom in our County.
Even more frequent are trailer fires. Most families lose EVERYTHING in these infernos.
A new roof! This is one of the greatest housing needs around.