Impact Yadkin makes its mark on the county

By Kristian Russell - krussell@civitasmedia.com
Keith Russell and Timothy Matthews carry a door around the house to the trash pile. - Kristian Russell | Yadkin Ripple
Ben Huffman holds a ladder while another crew member paints the house. In the background, Larry West helps fix the underlining of the house - Kristian Russell | Yadkin Ripple
Russell’s Muscles is one of the many crews that worked during the week of Impact Yadkin. - Kristian Russell | Yadkin Ripple
An Impact Yadkin crew works hard on a house which needed several things fixed. - - Kristian Russell | Yadkin Ripple
More than 1,600 volunteers were involved in Impact Yadkin 2017. - - Photo courtesy of Katie Pendry

Last week, Yadkin County was full of volunteers of all ages who dedicated their time and money to be part of Impact Yadkin. Since 2011, Impact Yadkin has been making a difference in the communities of the county. The biannual event brings together people of all ages that volunteer their time to help improve the lives of local residents with home improvements and community outreach.

This year more than 2,000 volunteers embarked on Yadkin County to make the community a better place. With red road signs telling onlookers that labor was provided by Impact Yadkin, there were over 88 job sites scattered across the county.

“Impact was great this week,” said Impact organizer Chris Hauser. “It was great to see God work in the lives of our teenagers and the lives of people within our community. We finished 88 projects in Yadkin County, as far as the Yadkin River to the east and to Jonesville in the west. We’ll complete several different jobs throughout the summer, as we’re hoping to complete 20 additional jobs.”

Some job sites were as extreme as re-roofing a home, while others were just for painting and yard work. No matter the size of the project, each homeowner’s life was changed by the work of Impact Yadkin.

Two homeowners had the pleasure of working with the crew, Russell’s Muscles. Peggy and David Joyner were able to experience first-hand the effect that Impact Yadkin can make. The crew was able to help the Joyners with several different projects from redoing a bathroom, to redoing the vinyl around the trailer. The Joyners were just one of the many homeowners who were able to experience the help of Impact Yadkin.

“You have no idea how this has impacted my life,” said Peggy Joyner. “For one thing, my house will last a whole lot longer. Another thing is that I just thank the Lord for every single one of the people who has helped out. It’s made me where I was blue and blah and worrying about how I was going to do this and that, it’s taken a load off of my shoulders and I know that I don’t have to worry about it anymore. It’s just helped us tremendously, and it is just fantastic. They are some of the most wonderful people I have ever met in my life.”

Without the help of the countless number of volunteers, Impact Yadkin would not be possible. The volunteers were able to bring joy and happiness to homeowners who are often overlooked. The volunteers ranged in ages from teenagers to retirees. As long as someone was willing to work, Impact was able to use the helping hand.

Keith Russell was the crew chief for Russell’s Muscles and the Joyner residence. Since Impact started in 2011, Russell has been a crew chief four times.

“My crew was excellent this year,” said Russell. “They all worked hard, were well mannered and I couldn’t ask for a better crew. It was also nice to see Forbush Volunteer Fire Department come by every day and ask if we needed anything.”

Danielle Matthews, who is a Yadkin County resident, has helped out with Impact four different times and has loved and appreciated each time.

“I keep coming back to help with Impact, because I love to see the joy on the homeowners’ faces,” said Matthews. “I like meeting other people in the county, and it’s just a humbling experience and it shows how blessed I am. I get to go home to a nice home and a loving family. Some of the people we help need home repairs and not only that, they need faith in their homes.”

Matthews was part of the Russell’s Muscles crew with several other volunteers. At one point during the week, Matthews spent her time talking to David Joyner on how things were going around the house. As Matthews was talking to Joyner, his eyes lit up and he made his appreciation known for everything she, and the rest of the crew, had done.

“This week has been great,” said Matthews. “This has been the best crew I’ve been on, we’ve had a lot of fun. Ben Huffman led our homeowner to Christ, which was great. Our homeowners are such great people to talk to. I’ve enjoyed everything about this week.”

Along with Matthews, Ben Huffman volunteered his time at the Joyner residence. Huffman has been helping with Impact for two years and he’s enjoyed each experience.

“This week has been great,” said Huffman. “I had the same crew chief that I had two years ago so that was nice. I couldn’t ask for a better crew, they know how to have fun while working. I like seeing how much we change people’s lifestyle and we can come in and look at our project beforehand then look at it after hand and see the difference. You can feel the appreciation from the homeowners and the community, it really is a gratifying feeling.”

While Impact is about helping around the house, another aspect of Impact is sharing the word of God. During the week of Impact, Huffman was able to lead Peggy Joyner to Christ.

When Impact crews were not working, eating, or trying to catch up on their sleep, they would be worshipping at Forbush High School. Ronnie Hill was the guest speaker for the week of Impact Yadkin and brought his Texas charm to North Carolina. Hill spent the week evangelizing with crews and churches and would hold a service every night at Forbush High School.

“The week has been incredible,” said Hill. “There are a lot of stories behind the scenes of people’s lives that have been changed. I went out with a crew on the first day, and three crew members ended up dedicating their lives to Christ there at the job site.”

While the construction sites and its volunteers seemed to be the forefront of Impact, the countless number of volunteers behind the scenes made Impact successful.

Party in the Park was another fruitful part of Impact Yadkin. More than 300 children were able to come out to different parks across Yadkin County to play games and hear about the word of God. During the week of Impact, volunteers also handed out over 600 Bibles.

From food service, to security, to Party in the Park, and water service, things would not be the same without the behind-the-scenes volunteers committing their time to Impact.

“Chris and I just finished talking about the planning, the administration, and everything behind the scenes and it takes countless volunteers and two years to put Impact together,” said Hill. “Just seeing the commitment to this is unbelievable. You don’t see many people or churches willing to do this.

“One thing that people across the country can take away from this is that the churches that are willing to work together are from different denominations. It’s not just one church or one denomination; it’s several churches all over the county. It’s also incredible to see the schools, the fire departments and different parts of the county come together to support the community.”

It is evident to see that Impact Yadkin has certainty made an impact on Yadkin County and its residents. In two years, Impact will once again be back in the county and volunteers are welcome and invited to lend their time to helping enrich the lives of the community.

“I’m thankful for whomever thought of doing Impact,” said Peggy Joyner. “I hope that God blesses them in everything they do.”

Kristian Russell may be reached at 336-258-4052.

Keith Russell and Timothy Matthews carry a door around the house to the trash pile.
https://www.yadkinripple.com/wp-content/uploads/2017/06/web1_Impact4.jpgKeith Russell and Timothy Matthews carry a door around the house to the trash pile. Kristian Russell | Yadkin Ripple

Ben Huffman holds a ladder while another crew member paints the house. In the background, Larry West helps fix the underlining of the house
https://www.yadkinripple.com/wp-content/uploads/2017/06/web1_Impact2.jpgBen Huffman holds a ladder while another crew member paints the house. In the background, Larry West helps fix the underlining of the house Kristian Russell | Yadkin Ripple

Russell’s Muscles is one of the many crews that worked during the week of Impact Yadkin.
https://www.yadkinripple.com/wp-content/uploads/2017/06/web1_Impact1.jpgRussell’s Muscles is one of the many crews that worked during the week of Impact Yadkin. Kristian Russell | Yadkin Ripple

An Impact Yadkin crew works hard on a house which needed several things fixed.
https://www.yadkinripple.com/wp-content/uploads/2017/06/web1_Impact3.jpgAn Impact Yadkin crew works hard on a house which needed several things fixed. Kristian Russell | Yadkin Ripple

More than 1,600 volunteers were involved in Impact Yadkin 2017.
https://www.yadkinripple.com/wp-content/uploads/2017/06/web1_ImpactGroup.jpgMore than 1,600 volunteers were involved in Impact Yadkin 2017. Photo courtesy of Katie Pendry

By Kristian Russell

krussell@civitasmedia.com