Funds from first Hope Fest will stay local

Participants at Hope Fest walk the track at Yarbrough Field as part of the night’s activities Friday. Hope Fest was a fundraiser for Hope at Home, a group that raises funds to support cancer patients and caregivers.

Ashley County Hope at Home hosted its first Hope Fest on Friday and organizers said it was a success.

The group plans to make Hope Fest an annual event as well as other fundraisers throughout the year.

Last Tuesday, ACHH hosted a Survivors Banquet to honor local cancer survivors and on Friday kicked off Hope Fest.

Hope Fest featured live music, food vendors, a survivor walk, a luminary lighting and other events for the community to enjoy.

Teams from local businesses, churches, schools and even a few individual groups formed with each one providing something at the event to raise money.

The teams that participated in the event raised money for ACHH. Officials with the group were not able to share a final fundraising count as of press time.

Hope at Home is a new non-profit organization that will fundraise annually, but will keep one hundred percent of the proceeds in Ashley County.

The funds will be used to help local cancer patients, survivors and their families.

“All of the money will stay local and we hope that will encourage more people to participate and support us,” Tonya Cooper said.

ACHH will be strictly a volunteer organization which will cut down on the expenses that other non-profit organizations have.

Hope at Home will not have salaried employees and some of the other overhead and operating expenses that larger benefit organizations incur throughout the year.

Hope at Home will also use community locations to host meetings and plan, therefore won’t have building or utility expenses.

“We are really excited about this new journey and we hope the community will continue to support us,” Cooper said.

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