The Joplin Globe, Joplin, MO

Local News

May 13, 2012

Fuller Center for Housing ready to help Joplin

JOPLIN, Mo. — A newly arrived nonprofit group is ready to help Joplin residents find housing in the wake of the 2011 tornado.

Bob Barker, a retired chaplain from Miami, Okla., said the establishment of the Joplin Area Fuller Center for Housing began with what he calls “a holy nudge.”

“I often talk about what I consider to be a holy nudge from the Lord — that God sometimes nudges people in a direction, and if we listen to that then many times things will start happening,” Barker said.

For Barker, his journey took a turn after a conversation with Charles Ray, coordinator for disaster response with the Cooperative Baptist Fellowship. Barker said he was inquiring about becoming involved with the group’s disaster response effort.

“That was May 19, and the tornado hit that Sunday,” he said.

In the ensuing weeks, Barker coordinated teams of volunteers from the American Baptist Alliance who flocked to Joplin to aid in the recovery effort. Barker said that in September, Ray suggested bringing the Fuller Center for Housing to Joplin in an effort to meet the community’s acute need for housing.

Barker, who sits on the group’s board of directors, said the group’s articles of incorporation were approved earlier this year by the Missouri secretary of state’s office, and the group received 501(c)(3) status, making all donations to the group tax-deductible.

According to the organization’s website, the Fuller Center for Housing is a nonprofit ecumenical housing ministry dedicated to eliminating poverty housing worldwide.

The Fuller Center was founded by Millard and Linda Fuller in 2005 in their hometown of Americus, Ga. The couple also founded Habitat for Humanity in 1976. The couple split with Habitat in 2005 but maintained their desire to provide adequate housing for people in need. By forming partnerships with local organizations, the group seeks to provide support that communities need to build and repair homes for the impoverished. The group boasts covenant partnerships in 70 communities and 16 countries around the world.

Barker said the Fuller Center has a “sibling relationship” with Habitat for Humanity. Their goals are similar, as are their methods.

Randy Crane, another director of the Joplin Area Fuller Center, said the group has selected its first partner family and hopes to begin construction of its first home in June. He said the group is seeking partner families and applicants to take part in the organization’s Greater Blessing Program, which provides up to $5,000 in repairs and renovations to existing homes.

Barker said the group hopes to build up to eight new homes this year and provide repairs to up to 15 existing homes. Barker stressed that the Fuller Center is not a stopgap relief effort. He said the organization’s commitment to the community will continue.

“When we set up the Fuller Center, it wasn’t just to meet the immediate needs of people affected by the tornado,” he said. “At some point in the future, we would like to reach beyond the Joplin tornado-affected area to help the surrounding communities.”

Barker said those interested in applying for assistance from the Fuller Center may pick up an application at the group’s offices inside the Transform Joplin Warehouse at 1201 S. Wall Ave., or contact Dixie Starmer, Family Selection Committee chairwoman, at dstarmer@cableone.com.

Substandard housing

Officials with the United Nations estimate that more than a billion people around the world live in substandard housing.

1
Text Only
Local News
  • Ruling modifies gas rates; MGE says bills to remain the about same

    An agreement to settle a Missouri Gas Energy rate change will modify the company’s various rates, but the net bill to consumers will remain largely the same, according to statements released Thursday by the gas company and the state’s utility regulatory agency.

    April 24, 2014

  • Railroad conducts training session; law enforcement officers work on crossing enforcement

    Joplin police and Missouri State Highway Patrol officers trained Thursday and will continue today on railroad crossing safety with Kansas City Southern Railway Co. The annual event, called “Officer on a Train,” puts law enforcement officers in the locomotive cab to give them a real-time view of how motorists and pedestrians approach train crossings through the city. The event began Thursday morning on tracks crossing Fourth Street near Murphy Boulevard.

    April 24, 2014

  • East Newton High student designated semifinalist in Presidential Scholars Program

    An East Newton High School student is among eight Missouri students who have been named semifinalists in the U.S. Presidential Scholars Program for their outstanding academic achievement. George Bennion, a senior from Stark City, said he was “super excited” when he was notified of his selection as a semifinalist.

    April 24, 2014

  • 042314 Rec funding Build a Lion_72.jpg Missouri Southern students to vote on new fee, going smoke-free

    Students at Missouri Southern State University will vote next week on whether they support creating a fee that would fund athletic and recreation projects. During the annual student senate-sponsored spring election, students also will be asked whether they support a completely tobacco-free campus.

    April 24, 2014 2 Photos

  • New Kansas gun law draws support, some reservations

    At John’s Sports Center in Pittsburg on Thursday, firearms manager Adam Gariglietti said he supported Gov. Sam Brownback’s decision to sign a bill that will ensure it is legal across the state to openly carry firearms. But, he offered some words of caution. “It’s great that he signed the bill,” Gariglietti said. “But at the same time, common sense goes a long way.”

    April 24, 2014

  • Baxter Springs chili feed to raise money for family of girl facing surgery

    On a Sunday morning in February, 9-year-old Izzy Morris woke up her mother complaining of a headache. Teresa Morris gave her daughter medicine. But an hour later, the headache had worsened. “She was in a lot of pain and started screaming and yelling uncontrollably,” Morris said.

    April 24, 2014

  • Carthage budget committee hears proposal for water, sewer rate increases

    The proposed budget for the Carthage Water & Electric Plant, including increases in water and wastewater rates, dominated discussions Thursday night as the Carthage Budget Ways and Means Committee continued its review of proposed city budgets for the fiscal year starting July 1.

    April 24, 2014

  • Mike Pound 2010.jpg Mike Pound: Self-driving cars mean not having to teach teens to drive

    I may be wasting my time trying to teach my 16-year-old daughter, Emma, how to drive.
    According to The Washington Post, self-driving cars are on the way. What used to be a dream of bored engineers has now become something that certain car companies are taking seriously.

    April 24, 2014 1 Photo

  • World Tai Chi Day to be celebrated on Saturday

    At least two communities in the area will be celebrating World Tai Chi Day Saturday with outdoor events at area parks.

    April 24, 2014

  • Groundbreaking set for MSSU residence hall complex

    A groundbreaking ceremony will be held at 2 p.m. Monday, April 28, for the new residence hall complex at Missouri Southern State University.

    April 24, 2014

Must Read
Sports
Photos


Facebook
Poll

What’s your favorite tree?

A. Maple
B. Oak
C. Dogwood
D. Redbud
     View Results
Opinion
Twitter Updates
Follow us on twitter