Approximately 30 residents, as well as associates, friends and family members, gathered in the dining room of Thomson Manor Health Care Center last Thursday morning for a kick-off celebration of the home's second Cystic Fibrosis fundraiser.
"Last year, there wasn't so many," resident Emma Beard said. "But we got a crowd today, so we are gonna do some business."
Evidently the residents have already been in business. Activities Director Tamicka Franklin said she passed out one Cystic Fibrosis Foundation paper doll to each resident last week and explained they would begin a fundraising campaign this week. The dolls usually sell for one dollar each. But the residents couldn't wait until this week, and instead they started asking for donations from visitors and associates they saw walking the halls, and listing the donor names on the back of the one paper doll. So, they began the kick-off meeting with $207 already raised.
"I just think it's so awesome that the residents are working so hard," Ms. Franklin said.
Last year, the residents in the home raised $850 for their inaugural CF fundraiser. Ms. Franklin said she hopes they can go "above and beyond" that this year.
Fourteen residents have been partnered with 12 Thomson Manor associates to solicit donations for research on cystic fibrosis. The associates help by contacting businesses to sponsor a resident. The residents help by asking their family members to seek donations from their places of employment and by asking visitors at the home. This year, Ms. Franklin said they will set tables up in the entry way of the home, where residents can sit and pass out information about CF and solicit donations.
"There are a lot of people in this community who do a lot of things for us, and this is great that our residents can take ownership in a project and give back to the community by helping others," Administrator Andrea Hartley said.
The project became even more personal for the residents when local citizens Lisa, Tyler and Destiny Kicklighter and Mandy Calhoun visited during the kick-off and spoke to them. Tyler, 17, and Lisa, 10, both have cystic fibrosis, as does Mrs. Calhoun's 11-year-old stepson. Showing her positive attitude, Destiny said living with cystic fibrosis isn't too hard as long as she does everything she's supposed to.
"Even though Destiny said it's not hard living with it, it really is," Ms. Calhoun said to the residents. "These kids go through a lot, and I really appreciate what you all are doing to help."
Cystic fibrosis is an inherited chronic disease that affects the lungs and digestive system of about 30,000 children and adults in the United States.
The associates/residents participating in the project are: Sheree Johnson/Henry Curry, Shonda Huff/Mary Samuel and Agnus Hobbs, Shawnna Garner/Millie Throckmorton, Lula Barnett/Emma Beard, Kay Holbert/Herbert Ivey, Tamicka Franklin/Annie Norris and Delma Widener, Tracy Kingsley/Delma Widener, Holly Johnson/Rhoda Brown, Kristi Baker/Sarah Brown, Angela Markley/Bessie Gay, Judy Ivery/Vesta Suer, Andrea Hartley/Brenda Thompson and Donna Forrestor/Mary Brown.
The fundraiser will run through July 7. For more information or to make a donation, visit the health care center at 511 Mt. Pleasant Road, Thomson, or call Ms. Franklin or Shonda Huff at 706-595-5574.
1) thomson manor2 -- cutline: Resident Emma Beard gives her pep talk during the kick-off celebration.
2) thomson manor1 -- cutline: Tyler Kicklighter talks to the residents about what it's like to live with CF.