Construction projects are some of the biggest ways we provide assistance to widows. Often these involve roofing projects and general home repair. We do not charge for our services, and most of the work is done by volunteers.
One Day Work Project Guidlines
The following information is provided for groups to better plan their day with Widows Harvest Ministries. To schedule a project, call (423) 266-0260, or email us at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Click Here to download the one day work project guidelines.
Current Work Calendar
Click Here to see a listing of our upcoming events!
Paying for our Construction Materials
The funds to pay for materials come from many sources: churches, individuals, mission groups that come to do a project with us, families of widows, and the widows themselves. We tell each widow who comes to us with a need that there is no charge for what we do. If they are in a position to help out with the cost of materials, it is a great help. But it is absolutely not a requirement. Furthermore, we never want a widow to borrow money in order to pay for materials. Deuteronomy 24:17 says, "You shall not pervert the justice due an alien or an orphan, nor take a widow's garment in pledge." What this basically means is do not cause a widow to go into debt.
Steps to Getting Assistance
If at all possible we prefer that the widow who is in need of assistance make contact with us first. In some instances we understand that this might not be possible, and we will then work with whoever is representing her (family members, social service agencies, neighbors, friends).
Once a widow has made an initial contact with us, our project supervisor will then arrange a time to visit the widow in order to assess her needs first-hand. After the assessment the project supervisor (if the widow desires) will have prayer with her before he leaves. Quite often we do not know where the money or the volunteers will come from to meet the many needs that are continuously before us. So we ask the widow to cry out to the Lord (as it says in I Timothy 5:5) with us and to ask our Father in heaven to make a way for us to meet her need(s).
The widow is then placed on our list of widows in need. As the resources and the volunteers or missions teams become available, we contact the widow and arrange a work day in order to take care of her need.
How Quickly We Respond to Needs
Due to the numerous needs and our small supply of volunteers and funds, it is virtually impossible for our small staff to immediately respond to most needs that come to us. We encourage widows to contact us after they have been placed on our list for assistance in order to find out what progress is being made. As much as a widow may find herself getting frustrated by the sometimes long wait for assistance, we ask that the widow remember that we are just as anxious to help her as she is to receive help. That is exactly why Widows Harvest Ministries was founded.
Who We Response to First
Often times this is the most frustrating area for the widows that we are trying to help. Since we rely on volunteers for much of our work and we never have a surplus of mercy funds available, we are continuously trying to match up volunteers (both individuals and groups) with both the needs of the widows and the financial resources to pay for the cost of the project. This sometimes means that a widow who contacted us as recently as a week ago may get assistance before a widow that contacted us a month or even a year ago. This is not fair, but it is the best we can do with our current provision of resources. We eagerly anticipate the day when our ministry has grown enough to eliminate this problem.
Quality of Workmanship
As has been expressed earlier, much of the work that we do is done by volunteers. Volunteers come in all sizes, shapes, ages and skill levels. Our policy is to never put unskilled volunteers on a job without skilled supervision. Violation of this policy would both endanger the volunteers and compromise the quality of their work. We intend to provide the very best workmanship possible through teaching and working with those who volunteer with us.
It should be kept in mind that volunteers are not being paid, and many are improving their skills by coming out and working on widow's homes (particularly many of the high school age people who work with us throughout the year). In addition to the many volunteers that come out to help we also strongly encourage family members of the widows to make themselves available to help out on a scheduled work day. It is certainly understandable that a family member may not be able to help out financially, but they can (and when at all possible, should) help out as a volunteer in order to meet the need.
Project Completion Time
This depends on the project and the volunteers that are available to complete it. Often times, as in the case of putting on a new roof, a project can be completed in one day. Other times, as in the case of repairing extensive structural damage, the time it takes to complete a project could end up being stretched out over several weeks or months. If, for instance, a youth group comes in from out of town to work with us for a week, and they are unable to complete their project, then it may take a while to get a similar group to come in and finish up. This, of course, is not to our liking, and we do strive very diligently to prevent this from happening. Be assured, though, that if a project does have to be interrupted before completion, we will make certain that further damage will not occur in the meantime.
The good news is that over the years we have been able to successfully come to the assistance of hundreds of widows. Our prayer is that as long as widows have needs we will be around to serve them. Even though we are not able to meet all of the needs that come before us, in the Lord's grace we are determined not to let the occasional failures discourage us from the greater good that we are striving to accomplish on a daily basis. Today we are providing assistance to greater numbers of widows in a more timely fashion than we ever have before.
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