Residents join forces to #8216;make a difference#039;

Published 12:00 am Friday, October 28, 2005

On Saturday, people throughout Lawrence County will join with approximately 2 million others nationwide in a day-long effort to be good neighbors.

The 15th annual National Make A Difference Day will include food drives, clothing giveaways and community projects spearheaded by a number of area churches and organizations.

Coal Grove Church of the Nazarene will host its annual lunch and clothing giveaway.

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Along with the food and clothing, there will also be face painting for the children and flu shots will be available. The shots are free for Medicaid and Medicare patients. Later in the day, workers will visit an elderly church member and make repairs to her house.

The church has been involved in Make A Difference Day for the last seven years. Event chairperson Lillian Slaughter said the motivation is simple: to reach out to those in need in the community.

&#8220We really enjoy doing this, we enjoy helping people who might need a little push right now. We just want them to know we care about them and want to help them if we can,” she said.

The activities at the church will be from 9 a.m.-2 p.m. The church is located at 135 Center St.

Members of the Friends of Ironton and the Ironton Port Authority will erect signs and plant shrubbery at the city entrances of State Route 93, Third Street leading from Coal Grove into Ironton and at the Ironton-Hanging Rock municipal limits. This is the first time the Friends of Ironton organization has taken part in Make a Difference Day but member Jodi Rowe-Collins said the aim of the civic group and the purpose of MDD are one and the same.

&#8220We just want to do something positive for the community, that's the reason behind Friends of Ironton,” she said. &#8220We want to make a difference in what's going on here, have a positive impact.”

The VFW Post 8850 Ladies' Auxiliary and Men's Auxiliary are having a canned food drive to benefit the Central Christian Church food pantry.

&#8220Last year, we did well. I think we collected 250 cans of food. I'd like to go higher than that this year, if we can. We have a barrel right inside the first door at the post where the public can walk in and drop off food,” Ladies Auxiliary President Kimberly Akers said.

The national event in sponsored by the Points of Light Foundation, founded by actor Paul Newman. Last year those 2 million volunteers nationwide reached out a helping hand to 22 million people in need; $2.6 million was donated to charities.