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 third 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 market Thursday and for several weeks leading up to it, area residents, businesses, civic groups, churches and government entities donated jars of peanut butter and jelly to benefit the Manna House of Liberty County.
So far, the event has brought in 1,904 jars, which the food pantry will use to provide summer lunches for area residents in need.
Businesses and organizations engaged in a bit of competition, each vying to win the designation of top contributor. Ameris Bank and its customers brought in 600 jars. GeoVista touted a collection of 244 jars, Hinesville Area Board of Realtors brought in 235, The Heritage Bank offered up 133, Food Lion donated 119 jars, Full Gospel brought 88, and St. Philip Episcopal gave 65.
Vietnam Veterans Association Post 789 and several others plan to submit donations during this week’s market, so totals should climb.
“Last year, we were able to help a lot of families with children,” Manna House Director Pastor Katrina Deason said. “This year we can help even more. Hinesville is truly a city with a heart. Peanut butter and jelly serves many people. Children can prepare food for themselves. Our homeless population use it without storage concerns.”
Michelle Ricketson, president of the Rotary Club, said, “The HDDA, the Farmers Market and the Hinesville Rotary Club are happy to coordinate the annual Peanut Butter and Jelly Drive. The community has really embraced this event, doubling the collection each year.”
She is also executive director of the HDDA, which manages the Farmers Market.
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, visit www.hinesvilledowntown.com. For more information on the Manna House and the services it provides, visit www.foodpantries.org/li/manna_house_ministries_31313 or call 912-368-3660.