Although Bro. Oliver did not live to celebrate the 25th anniversary of The Helping Hands, his dream became a reality and it is still in operation. This year is the 25th year of service by the ministry to the communities of north Bee County.
The ministry has been supported by donations from the area churches, individuals and some businesses. Food is purchased from the Food Bank of Corpus Christi which supplies to charitable organizations. Certain income guidelines must be adhered to when food requests are made. Bakery products are donated to the ministry by the local H-E-B.
Other items donated are clothes, household items, medical equipment, etc. These are distributed as the need arises. If money is available, some assistance on utilities, medicine, fuel, etc., can be provided.
The ministry is open on Wednesdays from 7-11 a.m. A group of volunteers helps every Wednesday and at other times, when needed.
The ministry is advised by a board of directors (Tom Yeoman, chairman; Joyce Hunt; David Stewart; and Joan Curry). Officers of the Ministry are Leo Oliver Jr., director; Myrtle Andrews, secretary; and Ann Oliver, treasurer. Ann Oliver is also in charge of the local operations of the ministry and can be contacted at home in case of emergency.
The Helping Hands also operates the “Haven of Rest” which is located in Tuleta. The two-story facility was a gift from the Bruce Withers family. It is used for Bible studies, retreats, rest and relaxation for pastors, etc. The directors of this facility are Rev. and Mrs. Vernon Andrews.
The North Bee County Ministerial Alliance Thanksgiving Service will be held at the Helping Hands in Pettus (on FM 623 East, across from the Pettus Community Center) on Sunday, Nov. 23, at 6 p.m. A time of fellowship will follow the service. The community is invited to attend.