LUFKIN, TX (KTRE) - Despite the on-and-off rain this week, middle school-aged kids from across Texas have been hard at work making repairs to Lufkin homes.
East Texas News stopped by several project sites and talked with the boys and girls about what they've been doing and why they're giving back.
As each chip of paint falls away and with every swipe of a roller, these boys and girls are bringing new life to local homes and helping homeowners finish long overdue repairs.
"It's very tedious work but it's very fun and at the end it's always worth it," said Anne Marie West, 15, of Houston.
West is in town with her church as part of "JUMMP," or the Junior High United Methodist Mission Project.
"Our project is to scrape and paint the perimeter of this house and so we've been scraping for about two days," West said.
Nearly 100 youth are spread out across Lufkin working on different projects. The work varies from painting and landscaping to light construction work.
This is Naomi Doerr-Garcia's first mission trip.
"It's been so interesting to see other people that need help and that are less fortunate that me and it feels good that I can make a difference for them," Garcia said.
Garcia is helping paint Kathy Hooper's house.
"Well they're really helping me a lot and listening to me and stuff. You know, I think it's wonderful that they are volunteering to do something like this because they could be doing other things like texting on their phones or playing video games, but they volunteer to go out and help other people and that's wonderful," Hooper said.
The students said they're glad they could lend a hand.
"It's so amazing that you know you can do something this meaningful for someone else and even though it is hard while you're doing it, it's not the worst thing that you could be doing but it means the world to them so it's a good feeling," West said.
The homeowners said they're grateful for the help. All the middle school kids are from three different churches in Houston, Wichita, and College Station. They're all staying at First United Methodist Church while they're working this week here in Lufkin.