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Groups look to help Lawton residents in need

(Source KSWO) (Source KSWO)

LAWTON, OK (KSWO) - A Lawton community center is quickly growing and adding more services that they hope will help assist every person in need in the area.

Unity Next is a collaborative effort between three local organizations that have different areas of expertise, but all aim to serve everyone in need in Lawton. The community center is located at the old Roosevelt Elementary School building in Lawton and offers a wide range of services all at no cost--that includes meals, furniture, clothes and coming very soon a free health clinic.

Organizers refer to the entire operation as a grassroots effort because it's completely funded and run through donations and volunteer work. Mattresses, food and medical supplies are just a few of the items that have been donated, as well as time, donated by doctors and nurses who will run a fully functional, free clinic.

There are hundreds if not thousands of people in need across Lawton and one of the founders of Unity Next, Dewell Brewer, says they are looking to bring one simple thing to everyone that walks through their doors.

"Adversity is hard to deal with so when they're dealing with adversity in life, you need a place you can reach out to that is actually reaching back,” Brewer said. “That's what makes this place key because we are reaching into the community and to those who are reaching for help."

There are also several fully-trained counselors, on site every day to help those who need mental health care or career counseling.

"We can help you get a GED, we can help you fill out job applications, we can help you with resumes,” Angela Stone of Unity Lawton said. “If you have a child that's struggling in school we can put them in class here and help them to get that GED or that high school diploma preferably."

Those services are what Stone says make the Unity Next building different than anything else offered in the area.

"We don't just stop at a hand up, we want to help change your lives,” Stone said. “If you are in a position in life where you need assistance, then maybe there's some more aspects to help that we can get you."

Brewer says the most important part of Unity Next is the people who come in day in and day out to help those in need. Not for a paycheck, he says, but simply because they have it in their heart to do good.

"Since the heart is there, it's easy for the work to follow,” Brewer said. “So even though it might be hard, everyone kind of reaches within themselves to help the person next to them and everyone sees the goal and the vision. That they are trying to portray here."

Unity Next is open Monday - Friday from 9 a.m. until 4 p.m. but you can call anytime if you are in need and they will do everything they can to help you. Brewer says they serve more than 100 people a week, but that he hopes that number continues to grow.

"If you're a kid, you're out there and have nowhere to go, don't know where to go, call,” Brewer said. “If you are an adult, have a family and you're out there, call because you never know until you reach out. Do not be, I could say, don't be too proud to do it. Because some people have so much pride in themselves that they don't realize they need the help for themselves or the loved ones surrounding them."

Unity Next is always looking for more help and new ways to bring those who are struggling everything they need. They ask anyone who wants to donate, anyone who needs help or any organization who wants to join the cause to please don't hesitate to call or text (580) 284 -9587 or message them on their Facebook page.

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