Local churches participate in Sweetwater Outreach Week

July 16, 2013

Rachel Hunt and Isabella Petty paint a house on Avenue D in Sweetwater as part of Sweetwater Outreach Week. (Photo by Tatiana Rodriguez)

Several local churches came together this past week to take part in this year's Sweetwater Outreach Week. Two houses were painted and several lawns were mowed around town for people in need.
According to Jamie Witt, this year's Sweetwater Outreach Week coordinator, the event began about six years ago at Fourth and Elm Church of Christ. "Our outreach minister at the time, Doug Crum, began the project and got other local churches involved with it and we are just trying to keep it going each year."
Witt also said that their main goal is to help people. "We are just trying to do Jesus' work in the community and help those who need help."
One of the requirements to be helped during Outreach Week is that the homeowner is physically unable to complete the tasks of painting their home or mowing their lawn.
Matt James, youth minister at Fourth and Elm Church of Christ said the main reason for Outreach Week is "to love on the community. We want to help those who can't do these tasks on their own."
Many doing the work this week were youth and adult volunteers from Fourth and Elm Church of Christ and First United Methodist Church. Those assisting in painting, hauling and yard work included Destiny Barrera, Isabella Petty, Rachel Hunt, Nicholas Barrera, Taya Carr, Addisyn Cleckler, Hayley Brownlow, Samantha Jones, Brian Niedert, Kaleb Niedert, Riley Niedert, Brenda Ramirez, Jeremy Witt, Tristan Baker, Zach Garcia, Jeremiah James, Ethan Whittenburg, John Basye, Elizabeth James, Abigail James, Leon Donham, Jamie Witt, Kathy Witt, Crystal James, Matt James, Scott Whittenburg, Kent Ruffin, Brian Brownlow, Blake Armstrong, Kade Kent, Gary Setliff and Steven Ghering.
Some of the volunteers also talked about Outreach Week. Tristan Baker, who will be in the sixth grade next year said, "This is a good thing for us and the community. It gets us off of the couch and outside being active and we are able to do things for others."
Incoming high school junior Zach Garcia said, "I think it is good to be a part of the community and to help others who can't help themselves."
Seven-year-old Nicholas Barrera said, "I really like helping and getting to paint."
Sweetwater Outreach Week organizers are currently looking for candidate homes for next year's outreach. Requirements for assistance are that the home is owned, not rented and that the homeowners are physically unable to do the work themselves. Call Jamie Witt at 325-669-6477 for more information.

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