Valdosta kicks off 9th annual Southern Hospitality Work Camp - WALB.com, Albany News, Weather, Sports

Valdosta kicks off 9th annual Southern Hospitality Work Camp

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Annie Simmons Annie Simmons
Clara Daniels Clara Daniels
VALDOSTA, GA (WALB) -  12 homes in Valdosta are getting some repairs and upgrades thanks to more than 100 teens from across the U.S. It's part of Valdosta's ninth annual week-long event called the Southern Hospitality Workcamp.

On Monday, Hannah Parkins helped paint 92 year-old Annie Simmons's house and shed.

Parkins and 115 other teenagers from around the country are in Valdosta this week doing construction and repair work on 12 homes whose owners either can't afford to make the repairs or are physically unable to do the work themselves.

"I'm excited because it's been years since it's been painted," responded Annie Simmons, when asked how she felt about having her house painted.

Parkins said she doesn't mind sweating it out in the South Georgia heat to do whatever work needs to be done on the home. In fact, she said she actually looks forward to it.

"We have people on our team that had been here before, so they had told us some stories about past camps," said Parkins. "It was makin' me excited to come and experience it for myself."

Michael James also helped put a fresh coat of paint on Simmons's house. He said he takes pride in his work knowing that it means so much to the homeowner.

"I'm glad to be able to help people for their house needs because if they're elderly, they can't really do it themselves," James explained.

Work is also going on at the other 11 homes as well. Clara and Jerry Daniels's home is one of those.

"We're painting, there's a few siding boards that need to be replaced...it's really to give the home, basically a new facelift," said William "Bud" Gouger, one of the adult volunteers assisting the teens as they worked on the Daniels's home. 

Clara Daniels says it's a dream come true.

"It's a blessin' to see the children come out because today these children are not working," said Clara Daniels, excitedly. "To see young folks come out and work on your house is really a blessin'."

Whether they're making dreams come true or just lending a helping hand, these teenagers will be working hard all week demonstrating what southern hospitality is all about.
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