UNION COUNTY — A $2,000 donation will enable the Salkehatchie Summer Service of Union to renovate five houses instead of four including one that will get its first indoor bathroom.
According to its website (www.salkehatchie.org) Salkehatchie Summer Service “is a pioneering servant ministry at selected sites in South Carolina involving high school and college age youth, adult community leaders and persons of different cultures in upgrading housing, motivating community cooperative efforts by helping persons to help themselves, and providing all participants with opportunities for personal growth and service.”
A program of the “South Carolina Conference Board of Global Ministries,” Salkehatchie Summer Service “is for high school and college age youth drawn primarily from the South Carolina United Methodist Conference. Participants must be at least 14 years old by the beginning of the camp they attend. Adult leaders are also needed to offer guidance and support.”
As for the reason behind the program, the website states:
Many of our neighbors in South Carolina live in homes needing repair and Jesus has called us to love our neighbor (Luke 10:29-37). South Carolina United Methodist Youth need to experience Christian servant hood. “And he said to all, ‘If any man would come after me, let him deny himself and take up his cross daily and follow me.’ ” (Luke 9:23)
In May, Broad River Electric Charities donated a total of $30,000 through its Operation Round Up® program to 18 charitable organizations in Cherokee, Spartanburg, and Union counties. Three of the charities that received donations are in Union County including Salkehatchie Summer Service of Union which received $2,000. The press release announcing the donation stated that the funds would be used to purchase building materials.
The Rev. Don Brown, pastor of Northside United Methodist Church in Greenville, is director of the Salkehatchie Summer Service of Union, and he welcomed the donation which he said will enable the service to do one more house than originally planned.
“It’s a tremendous gift and we are excited and thankful they think that much of our ministry,” Brown said. “The gift enables us to do one more house that we were originally able to. All together we’ll be working on five houses in the Union County area. This shows the importance of donations from people like Broad River Electric Charities.”
Brown said that the renovations on the houses will include new roofs and, in the case of one, a new indoor bathroom. He said that not only will it be a new indoor bathroom, it will be the first indoor bathroom the house has ever had.
This year’s Salkehatchie Summer Service of Union project will get under way June 20 when 75 participants, both youth and adults, will begin work on the five houses. Each participant pays $230 to participate in the Salkehatchie Summer Service program.
Participants will be housed at Sims Middle School during their week in Union. Brown said the program is paying the school district for use of the school for that purpose and to have breakfast cooked there for the participants. He said that local churches are providing participants with lunch and dinner.
Brown said this year participants in the Salkehatchie Summer Service of Union include persons from all over South Carolina including Greenville and the North Augusta area and even two from Ohio. He said the willingness of so many to pay to participate in the program and the fact that it can draw people from as far away as Ohio, shows the impact serving others in the name of Christ can have on those who do so.
“We work on homes, but at the same time God works on us,” Brown said.
Charles Warner can be reached at 864-762-4090.