While many students are taking advantage of Spring Break at a warm, sunny beach or by catching up on some extra sleep at home, one group of Emmanuel College students is spending the week working to help people in the Cumberland Mountains of Tennessee.
This missions team is led by Mrs. Amy Hancock, Emmanuel College faculty member in Education and English. They join about 120 other college students from across the country, including UGA, Wheaton, Ohio State and more.
“We spent our first two days working for a sweet, little widowed lady on the mountain,” Mrs. Hancock says. “We fixed her driveway and cleared the sides of the drive. We planned to replace a few rotten boards on her wheelchair ramp, but found it had rotted completely. We removed two complete sections and built her ramp back.”
For four years, Mrs. Hancock has been doing missions work in this area through Mountain Tennessee Outreach Project (TOP), and this is the second year she has taken students from Emmanuel. Pictured above are this year's team members with the homeowner (light blue shirt) as they stand on the ramp they had just replaced: Amy Hancock, Emily Taylor, Jennie Gardner, Megan Coon, Arin Adesuyi, Seren Gunter, Caryn Bird, Candice Scott and Matt Carr.
“I keep coming back because of the people who live here. They open up their hearts and their homes to us and tell us their stories, their troubles and their joys.
“Most of them are stronger in their faith than we are. It's easy to forget that our backs hurt and we are tired when we are fellowshipping with the families up here. They have very little in material possessions, but they are so rich in what really matters,” Mrs. Hancock adds.
“That's what makes me want to come back.”