Betty Jean Brown’s brick home in eastern Aiken County had some problems.
The roof leaked around the chimney, causing damage to drywall inside.
There wasn’t any hot water, and the living room didn’t have an overhead light.
Brown, who is receiving chemotherapy after a colon cancer diagnosis, couldn’t deal with the issues herself, but she had faith that solutions would be found.
“God is good all the time,” Brown said. “If you need help, he will send it to you.”
The assistance she had been hoping for arrived Monday when a crew from Aiken Electric Cooperative’s Project Power initiative began its work.
“This is wonderful,” said Brown, 70, who watched all the activity while sitting underneath a tent in her front yard. “They’re very nice people, and they’re doing a good job.”
In addition to taking care of Brown’s house issues, the team led by Bill Rodgers hauled away trash from the yard and mowed the grass.
Up on the roof was Aiken Electric Cooperative lineman Larry Nipper.
“God gave me a gift with my hands, and I use it wherever I’m needed,” he said.
Joining him was Richard Harmon, who retired in August as the president of Security Federal Bank.
“I’m still on the board with Security Federal, and we have a really good partnership with Aiken Electric Cooperative,” Harmon said. “We are a sponsor of Run United, and we participate in anything they do like this. I enjoy working with these guys.”
Project Power, which is in its fourth year, is designed to improve the quality of life of those in need in Aiken Electric Cooperative’s service area, which includes Aiken and Edgefield counties.
Projects are scheduled throughout the month of October.
Six involve repairing and renovating homes along with yard work.
In addition, Aiken Electric Cooperative’s employees are performing a variety of services for The Salvation Army of Aiken, Children’s Place, Cumbee Center to Assist Abused Persons, Aiken Senior Life Services and a food bank in Johnston.
Last month, Aiken Electric Cooperative kicked off the 2019 edition of Project Power early with the construction of a new front porch and wheelchair ramp for Alwillie Wooden, 96, of Salley.
“Our chief executive officer, Gary Stooksbury, prides himself on our commitment to our members and to our community,” said Keyatta Priester, manager of community development for Aiken Electric Cooperative. “We are at almost 100% participation from our employees in Project Power. Everybody has the opportunity to serve. Folks who aren’t skilled in manual labor can do administrative duties at the agencies.”
Many of the beneficiaries of Project Power are United Way of Aiken County Project VISION clients and partner agencies.
“Gary is all in for the United Way,” Priester said.