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HPU students and employees share in Hurricane Harvey relief efforts

Baseball team hurricane relief group photo for webBROWNWOOD – November 3, 2017 – Many Howard Payne University departments, teams, students and personnel were recently involved in various projects to benefit those adversely affected by Hurricane Harvey in the Texas coastal areas. Three projects in particular – the supply collection and fundraiser by the HPU baseball team, the Department of Music hurricane relief concert and the stuffed animal/small blanket drive by the School of Education – were part of campus-wide efforts to help those in need in southeast Texas.

At the Saturday, September 2, supply and donation drive, the HPU baseball team partnered with Weakley-Watson Ace Hardware of Brownwood and collected 1,000 cases of water and hundreds of other items including money, cleaning supplies, hygiene items, tools and pet food. The weekend after the collection event, 41 HPU baseball players, five coaches, the athletic director and then-alumni/development director traveled to First Baptist Church Port Lavaca to deliver the supplies. While there, the team of volunteers provided assistance with unloading donations, tree and brush removal, fence and roof repair as well as general clean-up efforts. The team clocked an estimated 1,060 hours of volunteer service for hurricane relief.

Choir at benefit concert for webAcross campus, HPU’s Department of Music also wanted to help those affected by the hurricane. The department presented a hurricane-related benefit concert on Thursday, September 14, that was titled “The Sounds of Restoration” and featured many of the university’s musical ensembles. Admission to the concert was by donation and all proceeds went to the organization Texas Baptist Men for hurricane relief and recovery. Approximately $3,000 was collected that evening at the door and more was collected online.

HPU’s School of Education came up with another creative way to assist in relief efforts. The school coordinated a “Comfort for Kids” drive throughout September, collecting stuffed animals and small blankets to comfort children whose families may have lost all of their belongings. The school was able to collect 50 stuffed animals and 30 small blankets for the children. Dr. Sam Goff, minister of missions at Coggin Avenue Baptist Church, delivered the items on behalf of HPU to the greater Beaumont area on October 4. Goff is the husband of Dr. Kylah Clark-Goff, dean of the School of Education.

Stuffed animal and blanket drive for web“None of these hurricane-relief efforts could have been done without the support of the people in Brownwood and the surrounding areas as well as the HPU community,” said Dr. Bill Ellis, HPU president. “It is wonderful how all involved came together to be a blessing to those devastated by the recent hurricane and flooding in southeast Texas.”

Those interested in assisting with ongoing relief efforts may donate to Texas Baptist Men’s hurricane relief and recovery fund. Visit www.texasbaptistmen.org/Give-Now to donate online and find instructions to give by check, phone or text. Texas Baptist Men is a 501(c)3 charitable organization that operates in cooperation with the Southern Baptist Convention, Baptist General Convention of Texas and associations, Southern Baptists of Texas and associations as well as other Great Commission Christians.

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Cutlines: (1) HPU’s baseball team and staff are shown at First Baptist Church Port Lavaca where they assisted the people in that area affected by Hurricane Harvey.

(2) HPU’s Concert Choir is shown performing during the benefit concert presented by the Department of Music’s various ensembles.

(3) HPU’s School of Education hosted a stuffed animal/small blanket drive benefiting children affected by Hurricane Harvey and the subsequent flooding.

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