For 16 years, Columbia County Cares has been holding an annual spaghetti supper fundraiser to help offset expenses. They hope this year it’s the biggest yet.
“Columbia County Cares Inc. was organized as a cooperative ministry of Columbia County churches,” said Dave Iverson, the executive director of the nonprofit organization. “We are a 100 percent volunteer staff and 100 percent donation supported.”
Iverson’s position is unpaid and the organization receives regular financial support from 28 churches and individuals. The annual spaghetti supper fundraiser, which will be held Thursday at St. Teresa of Avila Catholic Church on Columbia Road, is supported by sponsors and all proceeds go to the organization.
“Currently we have six businesses who have agreed to sponsor us this year,” Iverson said. They are A.B. Beverage, Pollard Lumber Co., Southern Beverage, A&D Carpets and Evans Family Dental Associates.
The supper will be from 4:30-7:30 p.m. and tickets cost $8 each or $25 for a family of four. Spaghetti, salad and a drink are included and plates are available for eat-in or take out.
Last year nearly 750 tickets were sold and the organization netted about $5,700.
“Since we are all volunteers and residing in a county building, 90 to 95 percent of our revenue is used to purchase food and health and comfort items which are distributed to our client families,” Iverson said. “Columbia County Cares is a full-service food pantry. In addition to the standard food required to be distributed by the USDA and Georgia Nutritional Assistance Program, we provide meat, staples – flour, sugar, grits, rice, beans – bread and dairy products, desserts and health and comfort items to each of our client families.
“We have 1,000 registered
client families consisting of 2,782 individuals which are allowed to pick up food from us once every 30 days.”
Iverson said Columbia County Cares spends just over $4,000 a month on food, health and comfort items.
About half that money goes to Golden Harvest Food Bank. He gets food from them for about 16 cents a pound.
The community helps provide food and other items by conducting food drives.
“Without these (drives) and my volunteers, we could not continue to do what we do,” said Iverson. “One of the programs we do every year is to provide each of our client families a Thanksgiving meal in addition to their regular food distribution. The spaghetti supper goes a long way in helping us to continue to financially support these Thanksgiving meals.”
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