Woke this morning at 5:00 a.m. and began to pack up. Rita had taken the sleep out challenge and also pitched a tent next to mine. We both finished packing up and made some coffee. It was another beautiful morning in New Albany. David Abraham had ordered a catered Bob Evans breakfast for the staff at Accel. The eggs and biscuits were delicious At 8:30 a.m. David called for approximately 170 employees to gather in front of Accel where I was invited to talk about United Way and our 50 day walk. At the end of the presentation, I was caught off guard by David and all the employees who had collected and contributed $2,500 towards our “Give, Walk, Do 50 campaign”. I can’t thank David and Accel enough for all they have done to collaborate this past year to help Licking County. Their participation in the “Buses of Hope” program allowed many residents in the Newark area an opportunity for employment and the ability to improve their lives. David and the staff at Accel, as well as LGS Staffing and their employment company, helped to break down barriers that were keeping many individuals from obtaining employment. This collaboration was an inventive way of overcoming some of the issues our county is facing. This collaboration was comprised of Accel Inc., the LGS staffing company, Ohio Means Jobs, Bridges Out of Poverty, United Way, and many individuals and groups who donated free sacked lunches to the employees riding a bus each day to the beauty park for employment. This was just the start that many needed to go on to rebuilding their lives.
I was also surprised this morning by the presence of our friends from the media. The Newark Advocate and Channel 4 were present to take pictures and to continue to help share our story. What a responsibility the media has in sharing events and information throughout our county. We rely on them to help keep everyone informed of vital and important information. Thanks all of you wonderful media people for helping to share our message and for helping to “build a culture of hope” in Licking County.
Soon afterwards, I put on my pack and was on my way for an 11 mile hike to Alexandria. The walk was refreshing and beautiful and offered the opportunity to talk with many passing by about why I was walking. I entered Alexandria sometime around 4:00 p.m. I was allowed to pitch my tent in back of the Church of Christ in Alexandria. There, I made myself a pack of instant noodles for dinner, washed up in the bathroom sink, and then was invited to a Bible Study at 7:00 p.m. on the book of Acts led by Pastor Kevin Hull. After Bible study, I made my way to the tent and settled down for the evening
2 weeks completed 5 more to go…Woo Hoo!
Continue to follow Deb on the 50 the United Way journey. To donate toward 50 the United Way go to www.unitedwaylc.org/50donate