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ABAC Students Partner with Salvation Army to Raise Funds

Students from the community development strategies class in the Stafford School of Business at ABAC have joined forces with the Tifton Salvation Army to raise funds to make a regional disaster center in Tifton a reality.

With a goal of raising at least $5,000 of the $20,000 needed, teams from the class are involved in several forms of fundraising that will culminate in the Red Kettle Kick-Off on November 7 at the Salvation Army offices on Highway 82 East in Tifton. This event will take place from 11a.m.–4 p.m. and will feature a sale at the retail store, hamburgers and hotdogs, a cakewalk, silent auction, face painting, and many other family fun activities.

ABAC Assistant Professor of Business Earl Denham said, “As we all know, the Salvation Army is one of the first disaster relief responders in any disaster worldwide, and we have been fortunate so far not to have a major disaster in our region of the country. I hope the community will pull together to support these students and have a disaster relief center the Salvation Army can work from before we need it.  With the Governor designating this week Salvation Army Week, that makes this project even more worthwhile.”

The community development strategies class is designed and taught as an economics course by Denham, who took the original idea and transformed it into a practical, life-lessons experience. The curriculum includes lessons on housing, public health, education, recreation, state and local government partnerships, cultural events, federal programs, and faith-based organizations.

“We have speakers who are involved in all aspects of community development,” said Denham. One of the class’s featured speakers is Susie Chitwood, the director of the Tifton Salvation Army. Denham and Chitwood had discussed a class project in the past, but had not had the opportunity to make it a reality.

“I have had class projects in Ashburn, Ocilla, Hawkinsville, Boston, Stewart County, Randolph County and several others, but I have not had the opportunity to have one in Tifton,” Denham said.  “Since I am retiring at the end of this semester, I wanted to do something in my hometown. Susie provided us that opportunity. With the encouragement of my wife, Teddie, who sits on the advisory board, we put this worthwhile project together.

“Not only will these business students come away from this class knowing how to develop strategic plans with strategies and goals to accomplish a worthwhile objective, speak to community leaders, and enrich a community, they will also be able to take pride in knowing they helped a community come together to help each other do something to make all lives in their community much better for all.”

source: Focus, Nov 2, 2015