Recently, First National Bank of Chickasha donated $7,500 to get a new non-profit service organization off the ground. A.C.T.S. is a local charity on a mission to help keep the elderly and disabled in their homes.
Founded by Dr. Billy Elkins, Pastor of Trinity Baptist Church in Chickasha, A.C.T.S. stands for Affirming Community Through Service. The mission comes from Galations 5:13 in the Bible, ‘By love, serve one another’.
According to Randy Talley, director of the new program said this program is mirrored after an existing program at Village Baptist Church in Oklahoma City, whose members maintained a close working relationship with the city offices to assist residents in need.
A.C.T.S. has grown to include volunteers and churches from all over Grady County. They offer a variety of services to relieve the stress that elderly or disabled people may feel when they are being pressured to leave their homes due to issues that represent safety or health concerns and violate city codes.
The A.C.T.S. mission statement is “to serve our local community and area through home repair and property improvement for the purpose of beautifying our community, sharing the Gospel of Christ, and enhancing community life.”
When asked what the benefits of helping to keep someone in their own home are, Talley explained it this way, “If you can buy someone even an extra year of independence, you have done a great kindness.”
Talley and his family members take that service to heart. His mother, whose independence is precious to her, still resides in the home that she and his father built together.
Talley also stated that another goal is to encourage community members to participate in the repair efforts. With a recipient’s permission, they make neighbors aware of the work being done and invite them to join in. Letting people know they are living next to someone who needs extra assistance and introducing them could form friendships that will carry on into the future.
Talley’s mother-in-law benefited from this very thing. After suffering a serious fall outside her home, during an ice storm, it was a neighbor who heard her cries and came to her rescue. Talley says, “the relationship saved her life.”
There is an application process for those wishing to obtain assistance and strict limits are set on what services can be provided. While most of the work is done by volunteers, A.C.T.S. works closely with a team of experts in mechanical systems, HVAC, plumbing, roofing, etc., who do the initial assessments on the homes. All work is done above board and by the book to satisfy city codes.
For more information on how to donate, volunteer or apply for assistance, call 405-224-3769 and leave a message.
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