Ramps built with love

Published 10:27 am Wednesday, October 12, 2011

Members of the FUMC men's ministry group are shown after a recent ramp building project.

When the men of First United Methodist Church of Brewton were looking for a way to ‘make a difference’ in the lives of those in the community, they never guessed that one act of kindness would lead to a much bigger endeavor for them.
“The men were looking for a project that would have an ongoing effect on the community,” said Dr. Ed Glaize, pastor of the church. “We had a lady in the church who needed a ramp at her home because of a handicap, and they built her one. The ramp got some publicity in the newspaper and others came forth telling of their own need for a ramp.”
The men just finished building their 60th ramp, working along with a group from New Beginnings, the local rehabilitation center and church, run by Bo Bell.
According to Dr. Glaize, the group has also been writing some grants and getting some referrals from Goodwill. Durwood Mantel has stepped forward to offer his expertise on the building project and they continue to work on the ramps.
“This ministry began two years ago with one project,” said Mantel. “Then as word spread, we had other requests so we decided to make it a mission. We have done 60 so far and five more are on order now. We don’t just limit our work to Brewton; we have done ramps and porches all over the county. It gives you a good feeling to see someone who hasn’t been able to get out or in their own homes.”
Each ramp averages more than $500 each, and the group welcomes both donations or help in the project. They will have smoked turkeys planned for Thanksgiving and hams for Christmas.
“The men wanted a hands-on project to show their love of Christ by helping in this worthy cause,” Glaize said.
It would appear that the men have found a way to do something for someone else and get the satisfaction of knowing that the ramps they build may mean someone will get a chance to go outside, rather than be stuck inside their home.

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