Every year, people gather from across Liberty County to participate in the annual Jackie Gilliard-Henderson Memorial Scholarship Walk-a-thon.
They come early with a lot of excitement. Once again, the members of Seven Ministries of Liberty County invite the public to join them for their annual scholarship fundraiser, which will be Saturday in Hinesville.
Gary Gilliard, president and chief executive officer of Seven Ministries and the son of the late Jackie Gilliard-Henderson, said participants in the 4½-mile walk will meet at 6:30 a.m. in the parking lot behind Bradwell Institute for registration. Walking will start at 7 a.m.
“The funds raised will be used to award eight scholarships to graduating seniors from Liberty County’s public high schools that choose to further their education by attending college or technical school in the summer/fall of 2015,” he said.
Funds also will help support the organization’s other programs. These programs include Working for Jesus (employment program for attendees of drug and alcohol ministry), Youth Mentoring (tutoring for elementary school students, Adopt-a-Housing Project — Raintree Apartments and field trips), Recovery Through Christ (drug-and-alcohol ministry), Senior Citizen Program (utility-bill payments, cooling fan purchases, and holiday gifts — turkeys and hams), Homeless Intervention (hotel stays, clothing and Friends of Manna House) and Back to School Rally (school supplies and cookout).
According to Gilliard, Seven Ministries, a 501(c)(3) nonprofit organization, was incorporated in 2012 and offers a variety of programs that benefit the community.
“Last year, we awarded $4,000 in scholarships, donated nearly $5,000 in gifts to senior citizens and sponsored a Back to School Rally at Rebecca’s Place in Hinesville, where we passed out over $3,800 in school supplies. We also support the local Manna House and the Liberty County Homeless Coalition,” he said.
“The community is invited to support this worthy cause. Since it is spring and we realize there are a lot of other events scheduled for that weekend, what we are doing will not interfere with anything. As a matter of fact, we hope that people will use this early morning walk to jump start their day,” Gilliard added. “This year’s co-grand marshals will be Hinesville’s favorite couple, Krystal and Andra Hart. Krystal is the public-relations manager for the city of Hinesville, while Andra is the city’s public-safety education coordinator for the Hinesville Fire Department.”
Participants at least 21 years old are asked to donate $20 to take part and participants from ages 16-20 to donate $10, he said. There is no fee for children younger than 15.
For additional information about the walk or to make a contribution, call Gilliard at 912-977-3527.