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Mountain Outreach, wrestling and track teams assist with Repair Affair


A group of UC students from the Mountain Outreach, track, and wrestling teams paint and build a deck on a Whitley County home during BWCAA’s Repair Affair on Saturday, Sept. 17.

WILLIAMSBURG, Ky.— A gray, chilly morning did nothing to dampen the spirits of close to 100 University of the Cumberlands (UC) students who gathered to do community outreach in Williamsburg on Saturday, Sept. 17. The students, part of UC’s Mountain Outreach, wrestling and track and field teams, volunteered for the Bell-Whitley Repair Affair, a one-day annual event in which people can volunteer to help the elderly and disabled with home repairs.

The Repair Affair is organized by the Bell-Whitley Community Action Agency, Inc., an organization designed to help people in poverty-stricken areas become self-sufficient. This year, Repair Affair volunteers worked on six different jobs thought Whitley Co., doing yard work, painting, and building ramps.


Cumberland students from the Mountain Outreach, track, and wrestling teams make repairs to a Whitley County home as they volunteer for BWCAA’s Repair Affair on Saturday, Sept. 17.

“The need is great,” said Charles Lester, BWCAA’s Whitley Co. coordinator. “I wish we could do more than we do.”

Seven groups showed up Saturday morning to help with repairs, including groups from as far away as Knoxville and Lynchfield, Ky. “It’s the most volunteers we’ve ever had,” said Lester.

Twenty-two UC track and field athletes and close to 40 male wrestlers and their coaches joined with experienced MO builders to work on three different homes. Two UC professors, Dr. Chris Leskiw and Dr. Eric Stephens, joined the teams as well.

Together the teams did a large amount of work, including building three wheelchair ramps, one set of stairs, painting and extensive yard work.

“We feel blessed to be here, to be able to make a difference,” said B.J. Temple, assistant track and field coach. Temple stated that the event provided team-building training to the athletes while allowing them to help others. Enock Francois, assistant coach of UC’s men’s wrestling team, agreed, saying the team-building activity allowed the wrestlers to do something good for the community.

Located in Williamsburg, Ky., University of the Cumberlands is an institution of regional distinction, which currently offers four undergraduate degrees more than 40 major fields of study; nine pre-professional programs; seven graduate degrees, including a doctorate and six master’s degrees; certifications in education; and online programs.