Responding to their faith


Derik Vanderford|The Union Daily Times Salkehatchie Summer Service Project campers scrape paint from the ceiling of a local home.

Derik Vanderford|The Union Daily Times A home on Willow Lane in Union receives a coat of paint among many other improvements thanks to The Salkehatchie Summer Service Project.

Derik Vanderford|The Union Daily Times The Salkehatchie Summer Service Project provides new shingles for a home in Union.

Derik Vanderford|The Union Daily Times A Salkehatchie Summer Service Project volunteer prepares to take a shift on the roof of a house in high temperatures.

Derik Vanderford|The Union Daily Times A Salkehatchie Summer Service Project volunteer cuts shingles to place on the roof of a house on Willow Lane in Union.

UNION COUNTY — An annual volunteer service project provided repairs to four homes in Union County this week.

The Salkehatchie Summer Service Project is currently in its 38th year, with over 50 camps across the state.

The Union camp is led by the Rev. Don Brown of Northside United Methodist Church in Greenville. Brown has been involved with the project for many years and has been a director for four years.

“This is a way for the youth to respond to their faith,” Brown said. “We’re only coming to make it better and witness through our faith. We’re showing love that has been given to us.”

Brown said this week was an awesome experience.

“Everyone worked together, and God was glorified,” he said.

This year’s camp in Union included 47 campers from South Carolina, North Carolina and Ohio who made repairs to four homes — one in the City of Union and three others within the county.

Laura Canine — pastor of Trinity United Methodist Church in Fountain Inn — served as the projects spiritual leader throughout the week.

“We love being here,” Canine said, mentioning that campers were welcomed and encouraged by community members when seen wearing their Salkehatchie t-shirts.

“Everyone in town knew what we were doing.”

Caroline Barger of Grace United Methodist Church works as the bookkeeper for the camp. She said although this year’s group was smaller than in previous camps, everyone really bonded as a Salkehatchie team.

“The heat has been rough, but we’ve been diligent in keeping them hydrated,” Barger said. “We rotated people on and off roofs every 15 minutes in the afternoons. They are making the best of it.”

Campers were housed at Sims Middle School, and Barger said those involved are grateful to the Union County School District for allowing them to stay at Sims.

Grace United Methodist Church provided dinner on Saturday and lunch on Sunday. Mt. Vernon United Methodist Church of Hickory Grove provided dinner at Grace UMC Sunday evening. On Monday, lunch was provided by Wesley Chapel United Methodist, and dinner was provided by Buffalo United Methodist. On Tuesday, lunch was provided by Bogansville United Methodist and served at Carlisle United Methodist, and dinner was provided by Lockhart United Methodist. On Wednesday, lunch was provided by Bethel United Methodist, and dinner was provided by Foster’s Chapel United Methodist. On Thursday, lunch was provided by New Hope United Methodist, and dinner was provided by Sardis United Methodist. On Friday, lunch was provided by Duncan Acres United Methodist, and dinner was provided by Bethlehem United Methodist.

A devotion was also held each night of the camp. On Saturday and Sunday, Chandler Lollis of Trinity United Methodist Church in Fountain Inn led the group in song. On Thursday, Fountain Inn Police Chief Keith Morton shared his testimony.

Anyone who would like to donate to the Salkehatchie Summer Service Project may do so by calling Grace United Methodist Church at (864) 427-0996.

About Salkehatchie

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.

This program of the South Carolina Conference Board of Global Ministries consists of a number of work camps for United Methodist Youth in South Carolina. During the week participants physically improve homes of needy families and reach out to these families and one another in friendship.

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