Southwestern Youth Services received volunteer help from the Texas A & M University church youth group, “Aggies for Christ,” who helped organize a building full of donations for SWYS programs on Saturday morning and afternoon, Jan. 4, at the 1300 Block of Forrest Street in Altus.
SWYS has received many donations from the Altus community over the years, from clothes to toys, to furniture and appliances. Anyone involved in their programs, or qualifies for their help with a child in their home, is able to benefit from those contributions.
“They come to us and they say, ‘I need clothes for my kid for the school year,’ or coats or whatever, and if we have them, we give it to them,” said SWYS Executive Director Kim Bryant. “This has been all piled in here for quite some time and it doesn’t have much organization,” she said. “They are going to put together some shelves for us and sort out what is good and fold it all and put it back in there so when people need things, they will be able to access it easily without having to rummage through a clothes pile.”
“For the past couple years we’ve always come to Altus,” Aggie group leader Everett Harrell said. The group travels through Texas and Oklahoma for weekends or week-long trips to various locations, lending their manpower to various homeless shelters and youth homes. Aggies for Christ was paired with SWYS through Henry Holoub, Youth Pastor at Tamarack Church of Christ, who helped the group make Altus a destination for them to volunteer.
“This time of year there are about seven trips that are led by Aggies for Christ that go around the state of Texas to children’s homes,” Harrell explained. “We’ll be going to Tipton to work there for a week.” Most of their volunteer efforts involve sorting, organizing, and cleaning things up. “They use our help to get stuff done,” he said.