Valdosta church hosts 33rd annual Day of Caring, Sharing and Giving

Valdosta day of of caring, sharing and giving
Published: Nov. 25, 2022 at 10:07 AM EST|Updated: Nov. 25, 2022 at 10:25 AM EST
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VALDOSTA, Ga. (WALB) - A local church in Valdosta was all about giving thanks to their community on Thursday.

Dozens of people gathered around as the 33rd annual Day of Caring, Sharing and Giving Thanksgiving Dinner was hosted.

Before COVID-19, St. John AME Church had a dining set up with several tables for people in need to receive a nice Thanksgiving meal. Now, they’re offering a drive-thru/walk-up model with a prepared plate to make sure the people in their community are still taken care of.

“We’ve been doing this what we call a day of caring, sharing, and giving for 33 years in the Valdosta community. This is another day of it, and we’re glad to be here to do it,” Eddie Koonce, Grandmaster for Georgia’s KEMET University, said.

Today people were able to drive thru, walk up, and some even had plates delivered to them...
Today people were able to drive thru, walk up, and some even had plates delivered to them personally.(Source: WALB)

Koonce said on a scale of one out of 10, this event was a 10 when rating importance. The church gave out 250 plates last year and aimed for 300 plates this year.

“Where Jesus said, what you’re doing to the least one, you’re doing to him and that’s what we base this on. It’s very important that you get out in your neighborhood and help the needy,” Johnny Robinson, Deputy Grandmaster for Georgia’s KEMET, said.

Some volunteers at the event like Joshua Vince said he also saw the importance of the giveaway.

Dozens of volunteers come together each year to make this day happen.
Dozens of volunteers come together each year to make this day happen.(Source: WALB)

“I saw a valuable opportunity to get involved in the community and this is my jam right here. This is where it’s at,” he said.

They say they want to make sure they don’t leave out anyone who may be in need, so they also delivered plates to LAMP Homeless Shelter and The Haven in Valdosta.

“Just to see what he’s done for the past 30-something years and to know that at some point I’m going to have to carry on that legacy for him, it warms my heart to be able to come home and help him every year. No matter what,” Antwaan Koonce, the son of the Grandmaster and a volunteer for the event, said.

Thanksgiving is all about community and this one came together to lend a hand to people in need.