DECEMBER: Holiday Bingo. This was our 4th year sharing kindness and holiday cheer with the residents of the Finlay House, a 188 unit, low-income, senior living complex in the heart of Columbia. We celebrated the reason for the season with tables full of donated prizes and refreshments as well as a roomful of merriment as we played several rounds of BINGO.
OCTOBER: Blessing Bags for the Homeless. We can’t end homelessness through wishful thinking, but we can provide kindness to those in need. With the colder months around the corner, we assembled blessing bags for the homeless: 68 period packs, 27 women’s blessing bags, 205 blessing bags. These care kits are a simple way to provide practical help to homeless men and women in our community.
AUGUST: Family Shelter Back-to-School Bash. Back-to-school shopping can be a challenge for any family. There are detailed lists of supplies the kids need for each grade level. And all the notebooks, binders, pens, markers and colored pencils can cost a lot of money. This expense can be even more daunting for homeless students living in shelters whose families may not have the resources to tackle those lengthy “must have” lists. This was the fourth year we partnered with The Family Shelter, an emergency housing facility for children and their families, to help kick-off the new school year! In addition to collecting school supplies to stock their homework station, we hosted a BACK TO SCHOOL BASH with face painting, corn hole, BINGO and other games for all to enjoy.
JUNE: Book Drive. We collected over 1,200 books for those staying in local shelters. The beautiful books will be a wonderful escape from the blazing heat for so many!! Each book included a hand-written note of encouragement.
MAY: BBQ For The Brave. We live in the land of the free because of the brave men and women who have served and continue to serve in our armed forces. Along with Sharkey’s Cuts for Kids-Lexington, we hosted our second annual Memorial Day BBQ, selling over 500 plates of pulled pork, beans, slaw and bbq hash to raise funds for Central Midlands Transitional Retreat and Friends of Fisher House. Additionally, we were able to serve lunch to the homeless veterans at Central Midlands Transitional Retreat and had enough “plate it forward” donations to provide them dinner that night and lunch the next day. We plan on hosting this event every year until there is not a single homeless veteran in our community.
MARCH: Soup for Seniors. Winter is a difficult time for our older neighbors. A bowl of hot soup on a cold day can go a long way in making sure no senior goes hungry. In total, we collected 846 goodies, 740 packs of crackers, 600 cans of soup, and 387 note cards that were assembled into bags of goodness and delivered to 150 seniors residing in three, low-income, independent senior housing facilities in Lexington, SC.
FEBRUARY: Hero Night. We partnered with Pleasant Hill Elementary School to participate in our second annual HERO NIGHT. Through a mix of education and activity, local non-profits showcased the different ways our families can help make a positive impact on our community.