Austin Christian Fellowship made a decision that their church family would serve somewhere in the Greater Austin area each fifth weekend/Sunday in 2014.

One small group of volunteers led by Partners in Hope board member Dee Ehlers decided to work with PIH that weekend.

Matt Peacock arranged for the group to serve a single women that PIH had served a couple of years ago. Here is Dee’s description of the day:

Two of us had met her 2 weeks before and the three of us had a good plan.  If we worked fast and furious, we could clean up the gardens, re-roof a shed, patch the leak on the main house, and repair interior sheet rock damage.  We could empty the packed-to-the-point-of-being-unusable storage shed and divide its contents into three piles: trash, keep, next day’s garage sale.

The twelve of us arrived early Saturday morning with enough energy and enthusiasm to do it all!  And it was overwhelming to the sweet lady we had come to encourage.  To love on.  It felt unbalanced and I beat back thoughts of how the team couldn’t be burdened by our recipients doubts if we were going to accomplish our lofty goals.

But we slowed. And we waited. And we listened to how hard it was to live alone, to be estranged from family, to struggle with depression.  The paradigm shift was palpable.  As we responded to Barbara’s need, we gave her time.  To get comfortable.  To process.  To receive.

In the end, the roof and house were repaired, a trash pile was hauled to the dump, a truck load of unused items were sent to Goodwill, a makeshift garage sale was staged on the freshly mowed front lawn, and the shed was now a walk-in!

Part of Partners in Hope’s vision is to not only help individuals and families have better physical living conditions but also help connect relationally with those we serve.

Thank you to ACF for caring for those in our community who need a caring hand!