Concert benefits families in need - WALB.com, Albany News, Weather, Sports

Concert benefits families in need

October 10, 2003

Tifton- While technicians and crew members make sure everything is in place, single mother of three Wendy Ward remembers the despair she felt when she first relocated to the Tifton area.

"I wanted to go back to school, but I wasn't able to. I was really stuck I wasn't able to do anything," remembers Ward.

She had searched all over for child care for her daughters, but on a meager minimum wage income wasn't able to find anything affordable until she went to the Tiftarea YMCA.

"It was a peace a comfort that I wasn't working and at school worrying about my kids, so I loved it too.  It was a peace of mind for me as a parent," adds Ward.

Proceeds from the concert featuring Tifton native Cyndi Thompson will benefit the YMCA Someone Cares campaign, a program that provides financial support for families like Ward's.

"We have children and families that come in and show a financial need, and due to their hardship cannot afford to play in a sport, or go to day camp, or have a membership, and because of that we go in and do what we need to do to make sure that they have the resources financially to come in and do it. We do not turn anyone away for their inability to pay," says YMCA CEO, Kevin Angle.

A policy Ward says changed her and her children's lives.

"It's a blessing, just a true blessing that people can contribute, and I say thank you so much. You really never know what lives it touches and how much it affects families that are in need," Ward says.

And as she watches from the audience, Ward will look on both as a fan and a mother saying thank you for those willing to help a family like hers.

About 100 tickets for Friday night's benefit concert are still available. The cost is $50 per person. The show starts at 7 PM at the ABAC dining hall.

Posted at 3:50 PM by elaine.armstrong@walb.com