Faith based group brings students to Walker County this summer to help residents

WALKER COUNTY, Georgia (WDEF) – Student volunteers from across the country came to northwest Georgia this summer to help clean up.

The P52 faith based group teamed up with Walker County to clean up homes.

604 volunteers came to Walker County and collected more than 51 tons of debris.

Here is their story:

“I tried to mow but the guys took them first.”

66 MIDDLE SCHOOL STUDENTS FROM ACROSS THE SOUTH GAVE UP A WEEK OF THEIR SUMMER TO JOIN THE MISSION TO CLEAN-UP WALKER COUNTY.

NATALIE ANDREWS FROM MYRTLE BEACH, SC
“I JUST LIKE TO GIVE BACK. I DON’T WANT TO BE SELFFISH AND SPEND MY WHOLE SUMMER DOING ME TIME. I WANTED TO DO STUFF FOR OTHER PEOPLE.”

THESE TEENS CAME FROM MYRTLE BEACH AND COLUMBIA, SOUTH CAROLINA…
ROSWELL, GEORGIA…
AND SIGNAL MOUNTAIN, TENNESSEE.

KALE RUSSELL/SIGNAL MTN
“I MEAN I EXPECTED BAD, BUT THESE ARE SOME PRETTY ROUGH CONDITIONS, BUT WE’RE JUST HERE TO MAKE IT BETTER.”

HARRISON HAMILTON/SIGNAL MTN
“I JUST THOUGHT IT WAS GOING TO BE A LOT OF TRASH CLEAN-UP AND FIXING UP THE YARDS BUT IT’S A LOT MORE LIFTING AND A LOT MORE HEAVY WORK THAN I THOUGHT.”

ALONG WITH WEED EATING AND MOWING

THESE YOUNG MISSIONARIES HAVE BEEN PICKING UP GARBAGE AND DEBRIS, PAINTING HOUSES AND FOR SOME HOMEOWNERS… MAKING THE IMPOSSIBLE, POSSIBLE.

HARRISON HAMILTON/SIGNAL MTN

“IT’S REALLY GREAT SEEING THE LOOK ON PEOPLE’S FACES, THAT WE’RE TOUCHING THEM AND REALLY HELPING THEM AND IT MEANS A LOT BECAUSE NO ONE HAS REALLY TRIED TO HELP THEM LIKE WE DID.”

IN APRIL, WALKER COUNTY REFOCUSED EFFORTS TO BRING PROPERTY UP TO CODE THROUGHOUT THE COUNTY. CODES ENFORCEMENT OFFICERS FOUND 219 VIOLATIONS IN APRIL, 318 IN MAY, 190 IN JUNE AND 163 IN JULY.

CODES OFFICERS ARE TAKING A COMPASSIONATE APPROACH TO GET EVERYONE ON THE SAME PAGE. THEY UNDERSTAND SOME PEOPLE DON’T KNOW RULES EXIST COVERING PROPERTY UPKEEP, EVEN THOUGH THOSE RULES HAVE BEEN ON THE BOOKS FOR YEARS. IF A RESIDENT SHOWS A WILLINGNESS TO MAKE PROGRESS, OFFICERS HOLD OFF ISSUING FINES.

SEEING THE NEED IN THE COMMUNITY, CHRIS ROBINSON, DIRECTOR AND FOUNDER OF P-52, TEAMED UP WITH WALKER COUNTY TO OFFER A HELPING HAND TO RESIDENTS PHYSICALLY OR FINANCIALLY HINDERED FROM COMPLYING WITH LOCAL PROPERTY STANDARDS.

CHRIS ROBINSON/FOUNDER, P52
“THAT’S THE FIRST THING WE HEAR IS THAT GRATEFULNESS COMES FIRST. THEY ARE ANXIOUS TO GET THEIR PROPERTY BACK UP TO CODE, BUT THEY ALSO ARE VERY, VERY PATIENT WITH US.”

THE EXPERIENCE PROVES TO BE REWARDING FOR THESE TEENS TOO.

CHAD CAUDLE FROM MYRTLE BEACH, SC
“IT’S SHOWING I HAVE THE ABILITY TO HELP WHOEVER, WHENEVER AND LIKE HOWEVER THEY NEED IT.”

…PROVING THAT SOMETIMES THE SMALLEST STEPS CAN BRING ABOUT BIG CHANGE.

(NATS) “GOOD JOB”

IN WALKER COUNTY, GEORGIA, I’M JOE LEGGE.

Categories: Local News, Walker County

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