Group works to bring hope and comfort to 61st & Peoria area

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Reported by: Sharon Phillips
Updated: 1/31/2013 9:09 am Published: 1/30/2013 6:03 pm

There’s a grassroots effort to bring hope to an area of Tulsa where many people live and work in fear.

A ministry called H.A.N.D.S. Changing Legacies is focusing on the area around 61st & Peoria, with the goal of changing lives and the legacies of future generations.

Last summer when fire gutted one of the buildings, the group helped the families salvage what they could, and then took them shopping at the Salvation Army for furniture and household items.

However, this is only a small part of what takes place behind the gates at Fairmont Terrace.

Tracie Salerno and her husband Michael have a passion to serve others. Their ministry sees the area of 61st & Peoria as a place of opportunity.

"My husband grew up here and we just have a heart for the people here,” she says.

She’s worried about the black eye that this area has become due to recent crime, and she wants people to know that real people who need help live here.

"They're here because something has brought them here, but they need hope and they need people to love them and not think so negatively where they are from,” says Tracie.

Besides providing clothing, food and comfort to the families of Fairmont Terrace, this organization also buses kids and adults to the World Outreach Church.

"We just come and spend time with the families and see what their needs are and see the real people that are behind the gates,” she says.

Michael Bass is one of their success stories.

"When I moved here I had moved here for a new job and I wound up getting laid off and so I had to move here,” says Bass.

He is the father of four children and says he wouldn’t have made it without H.A.N.D.S. They provided help for him to move out of the area and even get a new car.

"Yes they do, they give a lot of hope and a lot of help. If it wasn't for H.A.N.D.S. ministry a lot of people would be doing anything and they wouldn't have no world or no one to talk to,” says Bass.

One of the biggest goals is to get a community center built at Johnson Park. Neighbors say a center would give kids something to do and a place for adults to fellowship.

If you would like to donate clothing, food or money to support the effort to help people near 61st 7 Peoria, call 918-691-2664.

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The views expressed here do not necessarily represent those of KOKI FOX23 - Tulsa

GodsGutterPunk - 1/30/2013 8:56 PM
0 Votes
there you go mayor , a new community center,the people have spoken, they need help understanding love respect kindness, if I was mayor I'd help these people help thier community anyway possible.

GodsGutterPunk - 1/30/2013 8:50 PM
0 Votes
yay , more good news , I love good news,H.A.N.D.S. you people rock and show and inspire in the ture heart of go go go, hip hip horray Jesus..
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