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Mission:McDuffie searching for local homes to repair

Local homeowners who need a handyman can soon have a whole army of them.

For free.

Applications are being accepted for the seventh annual Mission:McDuffie, a local mission program that pairs church teens willing to paint, repair, clean up and do yard work with homeowners who need that kind of work done.

This year's program is set for the week of June 2-5.

"The homeowners in the past have just expressed how thankful they are for the students and for the work that they do, and they have just been amazed," said David Lambert, the minister of students at First Baptist Church in Thomson.

Mr. Lambert said participation is open to teens from all area churches, and last year, 140 students helped 19 households.

Mr. Lambert said projects in the past have included repairing fascia boards on a house, building or repairing decks and wheelchair ramps, hauling away trash and clearing away a garage that had been demolished by a storm.

"(That homeowner) was just amazed, and asked us how do we pay all these students?" Mr. Lambert said. "And when we told her that the students didn't get paid, and that they paid to work, she could not believe that they would pay money to come and do this work for her."

Mr. Lambert said there isn't a deadline for turning in applications to receive work done, but the sooner the application is turned in, the greater their chances are of facilitating all the needs.

Applications are available at the following locations: Salvation Army, Boys and Girls Club, Senior Citizens Center, Department of Family and Children Services, the Health Department, Manna, and participating churches like First Baptist, First Methodist, Thomson Presbyterian, Marshall Baptist, Sweetwater Baptist and Dearing Baptist. Applications can be returned to the pick-up locations, or to First Baptist Church. Returning to FBC is preferred.

"We do give preference to those we feel are in the greatest need," he said.

Homeowners who are receiving work also enjoy a special pizza dinner and fellowship with the teens at church.

"It is such a positive experience for the homeowner," Mr. Lambert said. "Not only do they get this work done, but they have the opportunity to interact with the teenagers and to see teenagers at their best, serving and working and helping."

For more information on participating as a volunteer or receiving work, call Mr. Lambert at First Baptist Church, 706-595-4252, or visit

Web posted on Thursday, May 08, 2008

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