PDT Staff Writer
More than 6oo people came out to reap the benefits of Christ’s Community Church’s 11th Annual Single Parent Fair Saturday. Early morning rainfall did not stop fair attendees who were already lined up at by 7:15 a.m.
Stations for the Single Parent Fair consisted of school supplies for students, The Steven Hunter Hope Fund food bank, The Life Center, The Ohio State University, oil changing stations to just name a few.
“It’s a joy because you get to see their faces, you get to see the kids. You get to see how they are being blessed because of what’s happening. I think that most of the people are generally appreciative, I really do,” Rick Clark, Associate Pastor at Christ’s Community Church. “When you arrive here at 7:15 a.m., and the line is already started, that means they’re going to stand there for two hours to wait to get in, and they have smiles on their faces, they stand in the rain, its amazing. Their attitudes are great, they really are.”
As some parents had their vehicles serviced with oil changes, picked up clothing or food, there was plenty of entertainment for patron’s children, according to Andrew Rawlings, the Director of Student Issues at Christ’s Community Church who is the overseer for the “Kids Crafts” area of the Fair.
“We’re just trying to help out the kids, helping them make bracelets. We have students of all ages, helping out from sixth grade, to high school and some that just graduated. We have some adults here too and they are the ones who are really in charge of it, but our students are stationed at booths, painting faces and helping with the bubbles. We have some inflatables for the kids to have that others are in charge of as well,” Rawlings said.
One of the stations that is frequented stations of the Fair is the grocery section which is made possible through Steven Hunter Hope Fund, established in January 2006 by Steven’s parents, Mark and Vergie Hunter.
“In this truck is 10,000 pounds of food, 50 pounds each for 200 families. The food comes from Free Store Food Bank out of Cincinnati,” Mark Hunter said.
“This is from donations from the community, that’s how we are able carry out projects like this for the Steven Hunter Hope Fund,” Vergie Hunter said.
With such a large event with over 100 volunteers, each role is equally important.
“My part is to ensure that the line runs smoothly, that each person gets to the proper line for registration. We never usually have any problems, everyone is nice and calm. I absolutely love being a part of this. What we want to do is show the people God’s love through us,” Marilyn Hairston said, a member of Christ’s Community Church.
From the parishioners to the pastoral staff at Christ’s Community church helping out with the Fair, there were smiling faces, dedication and commitment to the success of the event.
“I have been a part of the Single Parent Fair since its inception. There are many people that have many needs. We have been blessed as a church to be able to pull this together, with the help of the Lord, to be able to serve people, that is what we are all about,” Ralph Clay said, who is Associate Pastor of Pastoral Care at Christ’s Community Church.
Perhaps the ultimate way to measure success of the Single Parent Fair is by the response of the people it serves. A Fair attendee and single parent of three young boys, Heather Covert said her experience at the Fair was extremely beneficial to her family.
“I think this event is wonderful, to do all of these good things for the community. I am just thankful and glad to be here,” Covert said.
Portia Williams may be reached at 740-353-3101, ext. 234 or firstname.lastname@example.org