Thanksgiving Sharing

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November 20–  People in the Vidalia area are working to make Thanksgiving better this year for folks who can use some help.

At Meadows Regional Medical Center this week, employees contributed nearly 5,000 pounds of food to the Salvation Army.

“It is so awesome.  They said they were going to try to collect a pound each from 1,000 employees and they got more than 4,500 pounds and are still counting,” says Salvation Army Director Sandy Roberts.  “We’ve never collected this much at one time,” she said.

Meadows CEO Alan Kent says, “I stole this idea from Andy Stanley’s “Be Rich Campaign” at North Point Church in Atlanta.  We’ve been part of that for the past few years and it’s always exciting when you see a group of believers come together and in just a really short period of time have an impact on a community.

“I know were not Alpharetta and we don’t have those types of resources, but I look around here and see what incredible turnouts we have for United Way and what’s happened for the Hospital Foundation.  Everywhere I’ve turned in Vidalia since I arrived here 15 years ago, I see people who think of other people first.  They’re always willing to reach out and always willing to give, and I’m so blessed to be at a hospital where people think that all day long, everyday.”

On a smaller scale, Vidalia Rotarians fanned out and delivered Thanksgiving food to families in need.

ImageRotarians Anice McArthur and Sandra Kate Ellington (far right) were among eleven teams who delivered food to families in Vidalia and Lyons.

Nicky Catron organized the effort and said, “Our platform is service above self and we believe in helping the community.  I’m very thankful our clus has been so giving and we’re able to bless families this Thanksgiving.

“We are delivering to every family a 13-pound turkey with all the trimmings and I do believe this will make a nice meal for them.”

Paige Williamson with Toombs County Family Connection helped Rotarians identify families to help and she says the need is great.

“The Rotary Club came to me and said we want to give out 22 baskets to local families in need and we acted as the liaison between the Rotary Club and the school systems.  It worked out beautifully,” she said.

Published in Southeast GA Today on Thursday, Nov. 20, 2014