• 91°

Lowe’s ‘Heroes’ come to YMCA

Ensley Lowe’s employees Corey Wilborn and Rod Mette work to paint the hallway near the fitness center Thursday morning.

Ensley Lowe’s employees Corey Wilborn and Rod Mette work to paint the hallway near the fitness center Thursday morning.

More than a dozen employees of the Ensley Lowe’s in Pensacola visited Atmore on Thursday, to help improve the conditions at the Atmore Area YMCA as part of the Lowe’s “Community Heroes” program.

The program enables Lowe’s employees to volunteer in a service project in their community each year. A total of 13 employees visited the YMCA, offering their help for a variety of tasks. They included installing new ceiling fans, painting, and fixing crooked or damaged doors.

“You can’t pull me off the ceiling, I’m so excited right now,” said Paul Chason, CEO of the Atmore Area YMCA, on Thursday. “These guys really came in and hit the ground running, and I am so thankful for all that they’re doing today.”

Chason said that YMCA staff members and other local volunteers also assisted with the project.

“Everything really started (Wednesday),” Chason said. “We had people on staff who were off work that day, but were asking what they could do to help make sure everything would be ready.”

Chason also thanked additional community businesses and individuals who assisted. The Lions Club provided a lunch of pulled pork sandwiches, and Walmart donated Gatorade and water for the workers.

“The goal of this project is to enhance our facility in every way possible,” he said.

Terri Godwin, the human resources manager for the Ensley Lowe’s, said that the company decided to help Atmore even though it’s not in the immediate Pensacola, Fla., area.

“We have a lot of people from Atmore who shop in our store,” she said. “They’re definitely part of our community and we’re glad to help.”

Godwin said that the employees sign up to volunteer for various projects, and as many workers as possible participate. Godwin noted that the YMCA project was especially special to her, because she worked at the Atmore Area YMCA for 13 years, including five as director.

“I know about some of this facility’s needs, and we’re just happy to help any way that we can,” she said.

Ensley Lowe’s employee Kerry Nave said that he always enjoys participating in the company’s “Community Heroes” projects.

“It’s just a great chance for us to help out people who need it,” he said. “This company has been good to me, providing a job for me to support my family. It’s my way to give back to the community and our customers, and help out some of those who are less fortunate.”

Chason said that any materials that were not used during the work day Thursday would be kept at the YMCA for future projects. He noted that that the extra paint will be especially helpful, because the YMCA hopes to repaint the old library and women’s bathrooms as soon as possible.