PARKERSBURG - The Mid-Ohio Valley Work Camp returned to the area this week to paint houses for elderly, disabled and low-income homeowners in the Parkersburg and Marietta area.
Dave Shreve, associate director, said 450 volunteers this year are spending the week painting about 40 homes.
The workers, mostly teens, come from churches in Ohio, West Virginia, Florida, Tennessee, North Carolina, Pennsylvania, Florida, Michigan, Virginia, Maryland and Tennessee, director Ryan Ice said. The volunteers are staying at Ohio Valley University.
Photo by Jody Murphy
Jordan Ewing, of Dayton, Ohio, and Jacob Sanders, of Whitehall, W.Va., paint the side of a house on Lynn Street Thursday.
Volunteers aren't limited to teens. A Vienna group from the Grand Central Church of Christ has a dozen volunteers ranging in age from 70-92 who paint a house by themselves each year.
The annual work camp started Sunday and runs through today.
Work on the houses is done at no cost to the homeowners. The work costs the camp approximately $1,000 a house, half of which is provided through registration fees charged to the volunteers and the remainder raised through area businesses and grants.
Ice said the Mid-Ohio Valley Work Camp is a nonprofit organization that relies on congregational and individual contributions as well as area business to provide funding, food and supplies. Area Churches of Christ members, countless businesses and individuals assist in providing funding, food and supplies, Ice said.
The camp is made possible by grants from the McDonough Foundation, the Wood County Commission, the Parkersburg Community Foundation, KT Community Foundation, the city of Vienna and the Belpre Rotary Club. The camp also receives support from the Peoples Bank, Burger King and Kraton.
The Mid-Ohio Valley Work Camp was started by area ministers from the Church of Christ to give youth an opportunity to serve God by serving others in need. Since the first Work Camp in 1999, more than 400 houses have been painted for homeowners in need.
Most of the work has been targeted in Wood and Washington counties. Shreve said the group also has worked in Pleasants County.