The missionary group 3MT has decided to cancel its annual service project for 2020.
With considerations regarding the effects of the coronavirus pandemic, the group decided canceling would be in the best interest of protecting the volunteers and homeowners that are usually involved, considering the "unknown impact of the COVID-19 virus," 3MT president Kevin Kolher said. The group plans to hold off with its service project until July 2021.
Every year, the group gets together and helps those in the community who are in need. Kolher said 3MT works on homes for people who are either unable to do so themselves or can't afford to pay someone else to do it for them. A lot of the time, he said, that means senior citizens or people who are disabled. Kolher said the group has also done work at some churches, schools and community parks.
Kolher said this is what 3MT would have continued with had things moved forward as planned.
"So we would've just continued on with that, landscaping, yard work, painting we've painted a whole lot of houses. Just a lot of what I call unskilled labor, we're just willing to do it, and we've been teaching teenagers — but not just teenagers — that doing hard things is an important thing to learn in life and (to) be willing to do hard things for other people. So we will just continue on with that mission."
Though the group won't be able to have a service project with the 3MT missionaries, they still encourage churches and other groups to continue on with their service projects with hopes that members of 3MT and the community will be understanding of the decision made.
"We were disappointed about canceling for this year," 3MT member Jamie Atwell said. "It was a very difficult decision. However, it is for the best. After a lot of prayer and discussion, we decided to cancel. We help a lot of elderly in the local communities and we didn't want to possibly expose any of them. We also weren't able to host fundraisers to help with expenses. I think the communities will be disappointed, but I think they all understand the reasons why we had to cancel. Our goal is to come back next year full force."