Peanut butter and jelly sandwiches are becoming a summer tradition in Hinesville, thanks to the community’s generosity and the dedication of several organizations.
For the second consecutive year, the Hinesville Downtown Development Authority partnered with the Hinesville Rotary Club to conduct a Peanut Butter and Jelly Drive during the Farmers Market in Bradwell Park. During the June 2 market and for several weeks leading up to it, residents, businesses, civic groups, churches and government agencies donated jars of peanut butter and jelly to benefit the Manna House of Liberty County. The event brought in 1,010 jars, which the food pantry will use to provide summer lunches for area residents in need.
Businesses and organizations vied to be designated top contributor. Food Lion and Vietnam Veterans Association Post 789 teamed up to take the highest honor by bringing in 277 jars. Ameris Bank contributed 182 jars, and GeoVista Credit Union rounded out the top three with 147 jars.
“We are so grateful to this generous and caring community for banding together to make sure no resident goes without a midday meal this summer,” Manna House Director Pastor Katrina Deason said. “We’re indebted to the HDDA and the Rotary Club for the time and effort they put into organizing this annual charitable endeavor. It’s touching to see an outpouring of support like this, and it again confirms that Hinesville is a truly an exceptional place.
The church Deason pastors, Liberty Prayer Chapel, houses Gospel 94.9 FM WHNL. The radio station set up a booth at the June 2 Farmers Market and played Motown hits all evening as donors piled three pickups full of peanut butter and jelly. Intermittent rain did not dampen the success.
“The HDDA, the Farmers Market and the Hinesville Rotary Club are happy to coordinate the annual Peanut Butter and Jelly Drive, and it really exceeded our expectations,” said Rotary Club President Michelle Ricketson, who is also executive director of the HDDA. “We were just hoping to surpass last year’s total of 530 donated jars. Receiving more than 1,000 jars is phenomenal. I’m proud to live in a community that is so willing to come to the aid of others.”
Anyone who missed the drive but would still like to contribute can drop off donations of peanut butter and jelly at the HDDA’s offices on the second floor of City Hall. For more information on the HDDA or the Farmers Market, go to www.hinesville downtown.com. For more information on the Manna House and the services it provides, go to www.foodpantries.org/li/manna_house_ministries_31313 or call 912-368-3660.