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Christian youth make an impact on others’ lives with work project

By By Elizabeth Six
Braxton County High School
ELIZABETH SIX photo Matt Cheatham of Tennessee works to build a Flatwoods couple's porch. Cheatham was one of the leaders of the project, which was part of Impact Week, a program that brings together Christian youth to help others.

Part of being a Christian is aiding others in opening their eyes to God, and Impact Week does just that, but in some unexpected ways.

During the week of July 13-20, young people from churches in Connecticut, Massachusetts and Braxton County gathered to build a front porch for Daniel and Sherry Cool of Flatwoods. They were joined by a worship band from The People’s Church in Franklin, Tennessee. The three men — Matt Cheatham, Jake Leach and Cooper Green — participated in Impact Week as leaders.

“Impact Week is a great opportunity to help refocus ourselves to everyone else in the community and the rest of the world,” said Green, a first-time leader who is in his fourth year with Impact Week.

The band members learned several new things about carpentry and other types of labor during their week in West Virginia.

“It’s different for musicians to pick up saws and hammers instead of a microphone and guitars,” said Green.

They also learned how different worshiping can be in different places.

“It was refreshing to see others worship in a different way,” said Leach.

Cheatham added, “Worshiping is different in Braxton because everyone is much more vocal here than in Nashville.”

The three agreed that one of the best parts of the week was seeing everyone come together as a community. They were also very proud of their accomplishments in learning how to build a porch.

Braxton County resident Alex Carr participated in the porch construction, too. Earlier in the week, he participated in insulation instillation at Shiloh Church in Sutton.

“I’ve learned several things this week, including that God is always there no matter what,” said the 13-year-old. “It felt really good seeing how happy and grateful the Cools were for our hard work.”

The Cools were indeed very appreciative.

“There are just not enough words to say how thankful we are for God choosing this amazing group of kids to help us,” said Sherry Cool. “It was a lot of fun to watch them; they all worked well and wanted to learn how to use the tools that they got to use.

“I will surely miss the kids because they were here for four days helping my husband and I.”

Impact Week made an impact on everyone in Braxton County just as it does everywhere else it travels to.

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