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Focus on the Palmetto State

MARCH 2020 – Focus on the Palmetto State

In our first segment, we spoke with the coordinator of Crime Stoppers of Greenville, Tony Lee and the board president, Mark Meglic. They both shared with us that Crime Stoppers, a non-profit organization was founded back in 1981 with the goal of publicizing crimes and having members of the community anonymously report any information on these crimes and receive compensation. To date, they’ve arrested over 3,600 people and managed to get over two million dollars worth of drugs off the streets. The 13th annual golf tournament, which serves as the organization’s primary fundraiser, is scheduled for April 21 at the Preserve at Verdae. If anyone would like to contribute or find out more information about Crime Stoppers, you can go online to their website 23crime.com.

Segment two of the show focuses on the Upstate Fatherhood Coalition, a non-profit organization that assists fathers in doing a better job as parents and offering them job coaching and support groups. The group works alongside the South Carolina Father’s and Families Organization. We spoke with Kelly Walker, the executive director and Julia Sibley-Jones, the director of development, who shared with us the significance of fathers and the impact they have on a child’s academics, economic stability and the community as a whole. It costs 2,500 dollars for a father to go through the entire six-month program and transportation is provided, if necessary. If you want to contribute to the organization, you can go online to their website, upstatefathers.org.

The third segment of the show revolves around the United Housing Connections, an organization that launched a major project to construct 36 single units for the chronically homeless, suffering with some form of mental or physical disability, by raising 3.4 million dollars. We spoke with Lorain Crowl, the executive director of the United Housing Connections and Bill Kaiser, the marketing director for the Church Street Project who shared with us that they are currently a few thousand dollars short of reaching the million-dollar mark. These units are being constructed on a four-acre parcel at the corner of Hammett, Kerns and Church Street on Poinsett Highway. If anyone would like to donate to this organization, they can go online to the website unitedhousingconnections.org.

In our fourth and final segment, we spoke with the director and curator of the Bertha Lee Strickland Museum, Shelby Henderson and the designer, Nick McKinney. The museum focuses on the history of African Americans in Oconee County and it is free to the public. One of the unique elements of the museum is that they change their exhibits annually with a brand-new piece of history of African Americans in Oconee County being on display. The current exhibit at the museum is called the Backdoor, which explores the life of domestic workers between the 1920s and 1960s in the Jim Crow era in the south. If you would like more information about the museum, you can go online to the website blscm.org.

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