I, Kaylee Hopkins, along with Grace Ellison, have the privilege of photographing most, if not all, of the ACCE “All In” service projects. I am delighted to capture the motivation behind each project and the dedication of everyone involved. Thus far, I have photographed the construction of a wheelchair ramp for an elderly couple in Narrows and the rehabilitation of Big Stoney United Methodist Church. There were only four individuals working on the ramp, two county employees and two ACCE students. Despite this, everyone was enthusiastic about helping this couple and easing some of their difficulties. Charlie expressed his appreciation by bringing breakfast to the volunteers that morning. In about five minutes, they had eaten and were eager to get back to work. Their selflessness, commitment, and dependable work ethic was apparent.
A similar event occurred before painting a historic building. Ten to fifteen individuals participated in painting the building and cutting surrounding trees, including five ACCE students, and all remained focused and diligent. I believe having the caretaker of the building participate and converse with the students motivated them to persevere. The presence of the caretaker also reminded everyone that their hard work is not in vain. Rehabilitating the building not only helps the caretaker itself but also its members, who, without question, are appreciative of everyone’s kindness and dedication. The individuals who have been impacted by the two “All In” projects thus far feel supported and valued by their community. Accordingly, the ACCE Program’s service projects strengthen individuals’ sense of community and their faith in humanity.
By participating in service projects, ACCE students are making meaningful connections with members of the community and impacting the community as a whole. This is something many college students do not experience, but all young adults should engage in community service and value its impact. Correspondingly, one objective of the ACCE Program is recognizing the importance of community outreach and participating in community service accomplishes this objective. Captured in the photographs are individuals who take time out of their busy schedules to truly make an impact on Giles County and its inhabitants. What has been accomplished in only two days of community service is inspirational. The successful outcomes of the first two “All In” projects prove that community service only requires the collaboration of kindhearted individuals with passion for Giles County.
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