Exodus Homes has been selected to receive funding from Lowe’s Home Improvement as part of Lowe’s “100 Hometowns” program. Exodus Homes is a faith-based United Way agency providing supportive housing programs for homeless recovering people. The organization will use the funding to renovate the kitchen and fellowship hall at Exodus Missionary Outreach Church in Hickory.
Six months ago, Tommy Luckadoo who attends Corinth Church in Hickory, contacted the Rev. Susan Smith, Exodus Homes’ assistant executive director, and asked her if he could submit a grant proposal on their behalf. Mr. Luckadoo and his family have volunteered in the Exodus ministry for a number of years.
For 18 years, Exodus Homes has used the church’s fellowship hall for recovery meetings, special workshops, community recovery cookouts, “sober socials,” 12-step meetings, and other events. The kitchen and fellowship hall have been used to feed inmates from prison (out on community volunteer passes) and residents of Exodus Homes on Sundays and other special occasions.
The 100 Hometowns program is a nationwide initiative celebrating Lowe’s centennial. Lowe’s received more than 2,200 requests from across the country and chose 100 community improvement projects that span urban, rural, and suburban communities benefiting seniors, veterans, children, small business owners, students, and programs like Exodus Homes. Six weeks ago, Exodus learned that they were in the top 125 finalists. Mitzi Gellman, executive director of Habitat for Humanity of Catawba Valley, was assigned by Lowe’s to be their grant-site reviewer. A short time later, Exodus learned that their grant would be funded. Planning has already begun on the project, which must be completed by October 31.
The renovation will include new flooring in the kitchen, a new commercial freezer, a new commercial oven, air conditioning, a new steam table, two handicapped-accessible bathrooms, other handicapped-accessible features, an expanded dining area, improved audiovisual capability, and a mural celebrating the 25th year of the Exodus Ministry.
Bill Knight from the Lowe’s Home Improvement store at 1450 2nd Street N.E. in Hickory is the 100 Hometowns Store Captain working with Exodus Homes on the project. Mr. Luckadoo is the project manager overseeing construction, and Rev. Smith will manage the administrative activities. Residents of Exodus Homes’ vocational training program (Exodus Works) have already begun clearing the kitchen and storage areas in preparation for the work to begin.