Operation Compassion Continues Dream Center Concept

By , July 11, 2019

For more than 20 years, Operation Compassion has been looking for ways to reach out to assist individuals and families that have found themselves in difficult circumstances. It doesn’t matter if a disaster caused the immediate need for relief and aid or if it was a result of socio-economic status. When people find themselves searching to provide the basic necessities of life, Operation Compassion has always found a way to provide assistance. Often times this assistance included food, bottled water, clothing and shoes, cleaning supplies and equipment, building supplies of all types and many other types of help.

In 2001, Operation Compassion launched a program in southwestern West Virginia, in the heart of rural Appalachia. This particular area of West Virginia and Kentucky relies heavily upon the coal industry for people’s livelihood and is considered one of the most impoverished areas of the United States.

An old coal company’s store and office building (4 floors) in Logan, WV was secured and remodeling began to house what was to be named the Appalachia Dream Center. Local pastor Michael Hartwell was tasked with the responsibility of day to day operations under the tutelage of David Lorency, president of Operation Compassion. For the past several years, Mike Hartwell has been director of the ADC and has expanded its operation.

People waiting for ADC food distribution

The remodeled building has a commercial kitchen and dining hall that can serve hundreds of hot meals at a time on the first floor, the second floor has 20 hotel style rooms, the third floor is currently being remodeled for more sleep rooms and the fourth floor serves as a seminar/conference area with rooms for breakout sessions.

Currently, the number one program housed at the ADC is a residential drug/alcohol rehabilitation program which had 10 graduates last year. To date, those ten remain sober and productive members of the community. In addition, the ADC continues:

  • to serve hot meals at the center and deliver hot meals to those unable to get out
  • to provide food boxes to families struggling with food insecurity
  • Back 2 School medical/dental/vision clinics for children including backpack giveaways occur several times a year
  • movie nights in the local communities
  • to invite volunteers from all over the country come to help with programming and do repairs/remodeling at the center and in the community
  • serving WV as a disaster relief location for WVEMA and WV National Guard
  • many other smaller individual programs

Serving hot meals at ADC

According to Mike Hartwell, the next planned program is a grief counseling initiative to deal with those who have suffered a life changing loss.

The unique outreach in Appalachia doesn’t end with Operation Compassion’s own program at ADC but is enhanced through seven partnerships that reach out to more than 1,000 communities. We send semi-trucks to these partners paid by grants given to us by them. These unique partnerships extend across southern Appalachia sending products and supplies to churches, other non-profit agencies, schools, day care centers and other local entities reaching their specific communities. Without these continued, valuable partnerships, Operation Compassion and the ADC would have difficulty in meeting the needs throughout the region.

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Mail your donations to:                               

Operation Compassion

114 Stuart Road, NE PMB 370

Cleveland, TN 37312

423.728.3932 Office

423.614.4995 Fax

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