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Club builds handicap ramps

en’s club members Buck Farrior, Burrell Jerkins, Butch McKenzie, Durwood Mantel and Mike Edwards build a ramp for an Atmore resident in May.

en’s club members Buck Farrior, Burrell Jerkins, Butch McKenzie, Durwood Mantel and Mike Edwards build a ramp for an Atmore resident in May.

The United Methodist Men’s Club might be based in Brewton, but they have been doing plenty of goodwill in the Atmore area as well.

One of the club’s current ministries is building ramps for handicapped people. Pat Poole, president of the men’s club, said that the ministry started about six years ago when a church member named Durwood Mantel because building ramps for locals in need.

“Durwood just had a vision to help people,” Poole said. “After he built a couple of ramps, some of the other guys in the church volunteered to help him, and it grew from there.”

Poole said the ministry finished its 225th ramp two weeks ago. Only about 10 ramps have been built in other counties, and the rest have been constructed for Escambia County residents. Poole estimated that more than 30 percent of the ramps have been built in the Atmore community.

“We try to build them for people who don’t have the resources to hire someone else to build it for them,” Poole said.

Poole noted that it costs about $800 to construct each ramp, and so the ministry relies on many donations and contributions from churches, businesses and individuals. In addition, some home members have offered to pay for their ramp construction, but it is not required.

“We’ve been able to standardize some of the building so it stays consistent,” he said. “It takes about six people to build each one.”

Poole said that the club is still looking for people who might need help in the Atmore area. Anyone who wishes for more information can call him at (251) 363-1777 or email him at pat.poole52@gmail.com.

In addition, anyone who wishes to volunteer or donate can also contact Poole for more information.

“We’re always looking for people that would love to volunteer,” he said.