SCOTTSBORO, Ala. - For the last week, people throughout Jackson County have been working to gather donations for the Food For Thought fundraiser. The drive collects funds to support meal programs for students in need.
Local and state officials gathered for the announcement of the Food for Thought donation total. To them, the outcome was unbelievable. "As of right now, we've raised $10,600 for Food for Thought," announced Rick Roden, CEO of the Jackson County Chamber of Commerce.
In initial meetings, leaders thought a goal of $10,000 may have been a stretch. "I told Mr. Roden I would like to see $10,000 but if we don't, don't be let down too bad," said Representative Timmy Hanes.
With the help and efforts of the community, they were able to exceed it. "If they know what the problem is, they'll step up to the plate every time. And they did in a big way every time," said Representative Hanes.
One contributor said this fundraiser had more of a personal meaning for her. "My mother worked as a janitor at the Bridgeport Elementary School for several years," explained Karen Haggard. "She would come home and she would talk about those kids on Monday morning. That you couldn't fill them up, they were that hungry."
Hearing heart-wrenching stories like these got Haggard involved. With the help of her employer, West Rock Mill, they donated $1,200 to the cause. "It's just self satisfaction. If you've been lucky enough to be blessed with food to eat on your table, I think it's our obligation to share with those who can't."
This doesn't mark the end of the "Food For Thought" drive. Representative Hanes is asking businesses in the Jackson County area to act as drop off locations for food items. If you are interested in participating, you can contact his legislative office.