Nancy Edwards has been named Worley-Luginbuel's Hometown Hero for her efforts with Bridges of Hope, Grove Christian Center and the Delaware County Jail.
Edwards was nominated by her pastor, David Knox, for her tireless work as someone who faithfully helps those who have found themselves in the "vicious cycle of poverty and with limited social skills".
Edwards is the founder of the Grove chapter of Bridges of Hope, which is a non-profit organization dedicated to helping individuals overcome poverty. The chapter has been so successful that a local transitional housing facility has opened the doors and a program entitled "Getting Ahead" to help individuals transition back into the workplace.
"I don't need to be recognized, God takes care of that, but I love these people that I work with," said Edwards. "Even though we don't have a hundred percent of people who's lives are changed, but even to see one, two, three, five out of twenty, it is awesome."
Edwards isn't discouraged by her work, instead she rejoices with each one who graduates from the program.
"We rejoice with the ones who have said 'I want to change and I accept your help and I will walk in it and I will choose a new future' and that is just the best thank you that we could ever get for the work that we do," said Edwards.
Edwards says that the timing is interesting of the award.
"This is coming just at the right time, because this is a questionable period. It's a time of reorganizing our Bridges program and building it up so that we can go back in there with new personnel, new blood, new people that really have a heart for this and want to change lives. So I am looking for volunteers," said Edwards.
Sailboat Bridge is the logo for Bridges of Hope and Edwards says there is a special meaning behind that.
"It's such a sturdy structure and it is so strong and that is what we were trying to say is that we were trying to establish firm, sure foundations in the lives of all of these men and women with whom we work," said Edwards.
Edwards says that they are in need of volunteers.
"We always need more help. We have a generation of young people right now who are, in many instances, fatherless. They came from homes that weren't able to give them that foundation and that background that they needed in order to have strong feet to stand on as they entered adulthood. And because they didn't have [that background] they fell into diverse temptations," said Edwards. "Thank God that Jesus has set them free!"
For more information on Bridges of Hope or to volunteer, call 918-257-1230.