First Baptist youth 'help build hope' for family
By REBECCA LEFTWICH
Richard Booth is helping a group of teenagers frame a wall section.
“Hey, Brian? Get on this side of it,” he calls to a bespectacled, hammer-wielding boy. “You’re right-handed – you can reach it better from here.”
“It will make them aware of ways they can help other people,” Booth said. “In churches, we sometimes give to missions. This is a hands-on application where they can see what they’ve built for a needy family.”
Working in teams with an adult leader, students complete 4-foot wall sections and then assemble the roofless structure – eventually to become an 1,800 square-foot residence – before taking it apart and packing it onto a moving truck to be shipped to the permanent home site.
Saturday marked First Baptist’s third year of participation in the Help Build Hope program, in conjunction with its annual Disciple Now conference. In about four hours, the group takes a pile of lumber, frames 4-foot sections, assembles the sections into a roofless, partitioned home, takes apart the structure and loads the sections onto a moving truck bound for the permanent home site.
“It’s an opportunity to do some hard work for a good cause,” said Newnan High School senior Melinda Smith, who has participated in the project all three years.
Brian Snivley, operations manager for Help Build Hope, said the organization averages more than 40 structures throughout the country each year, guiding churches, corporations and businesses – “anybody who will have us” – through the building process.
For churches like First Baptist, Snivley said, the project can bridge a generational gap.
“Older people may think young people act crazy and disrespectful,” he said. “This can build a relationship, hopefully. You spend three or four hours working together and see the result. That’s really important as well.”
For more information, visit www.crossroadsmissions.com .