Permian Basin Mission Center
For our first event in Texas, our team partnered with the Permian Basin Mission Center (PBMC) in Odessa. The PBMC is a nonprofit organization that “seeks to promote the general welfare of those in need, and to relieve human suffering due to hunger and deprivation.” They offer free clothing, furniture, food, medical services and counseling to those in need throughout the Odessa area.
The PBMC was in rough condition when we arrived. Nearly all of their funding had been cut when their previous CEO and a majority of the board stepped down, and they were forced to let half of their staff go. With only 5 employees including their new CEO, Hector, the PBMC still serves up to 200 people every single day, with very little financial or volunteer assistance.
With a group of just under 100 volunteers, we worked in the sub-freezing weather to get this facility back into shape. We sorted and organized hundreds of pounds of donations, and completely overhauled their furniture and linen rooms. We also repainted, cleaned, and installed floors in the only two onsite restrooms. Additionally, we built a framed in window between the lobby and the kitchen for the secretary to use when speaking to clients, freeing up valuable space in the waiting room.
Our largest project was repairing the damage created by years of flooding. Last winter, the PBMC saw huge floods at their facility, ruining their flooring, donations, and furniture. Through some careful inspection by RMD Jerry Heald, we realized that the water was not coming in through the ground as they had previously thought, but from a layer of broken windows that had been sealed in between their outdoor siding and indoor walls. Once we found the source of these leaks, our team removed and repaired hundreds of feet of siding, and completely repainted the flooring throughout their facility.
We held our 2016 Abilene Weidner Cares event at the Salvation Army. The Salvation Army is a faith based organization that offers services to those in need both throughout the Abilene area and around the world. They offer shelter and housing for men, women, and children, in addition to offering an in-patient drug and alcohol rehabilitation. They also hundreds of meals every day to those in need.
According to the weather man we were supposed to miss the snow that had been blowing through the region, but as usual, he was wrong! We arrived at the facility with the ground covered in snow, and more coming down every minute. We were able to regroup, eliminate our outdoor projects, and get our Weidner Cares day started without incident.
We spent the day painting, organizing, and repairing several rooms throughout their facility. We completely repainted their only dining room, in addition to a nursery that had rainbow “bloody handprints” painted on the walls. We also cleaned, repainted, and reorganized their fitness room, which hadn’t been used in years because of its condition. We completely sorted and reorganized a storage room which housed gifts, emergency supplies, and decorations for the whole facility.
One of our largest projects was repainting and repairing the onsite chapel that had been damaged by flooding. Our team spent nearly all day painting every detail of the large space, making it lighter, brighter, and more welcoming.