Junior Chamber donates trikes to MECC to promote wellness
by Sharon Hall | May 19, 2017 3:15 am
Last Updated: May 19, 2017 at 12:26 am
Manning Early Childhood Center has new tricycles, thanks to the efforts of four Clarendon County Junior Chamber of Commerce members.
The Manning-based non-profit organization reached out to the community to raise more than $15,000 in order to purchase the trikes, which its members and school leaders hope will promote healthy living and wellness habits in students, faculty, staff and the surrounding community.
“I remember riding the old bikes as a student in the district,” said Junior Chamber President H.B. Buddin. “When we were growing up within the primary school system here in Manning, we had a track similar to the one here at MECC.”
Junior Chamber Treasurer Thad Kennedy said fundraising came from various fundraisers, like the Oyster Roast and the Big Gun Raffle at Christmas.
“We also have The Taste of Clarendon, which is coming up in September,” he said. “Those are just a few different ways to raise money for the community. We are a group of community-oriented guys that waant to do as much as we can to look out for people in the area, as well as raise money for different causes.”
Member Nelson Gibbons, who assists with fundraising, is passionate about the cause.
“We’ve got a couple of guys from different parts of the community who work together,” he said. “We’ve also got Summerton guys. I’m from the northern part of the community, New Zion. Manning, Summerton, Turbeville and New Zion work together on projects throughout the community.”
Gibbons said the Junior Chamber’s members felt great about the modification of the dugouts at the county ball fields at J.C. Britton Park earlier this year. They helped with similar modifications to the Summerton Athletic Club dugouts. One of the group’s largest projects involved raising more than $50,000 for the reconstruction of Gibbons Street Park.
Occupational Therapist and Wellness Coordinator for MECC Robin Prothro and MECC Enterprise Learning Coach Kelli Bellant escorted the presenters to the school field last week to unload the bikes for the students.
“The purposes of the bikes are so that children are able to learn to ride bikes,” said Prothro. “We try to keep them moving throughout the school day in an effort to promote extra movement, exercise and wellness.”
Four Junior Chamber members partnered with MECC in an effort to promote healthy living and wellness habits.
Donned with purple plastic drink containers, kindergarteners showed their appreciation for the donated “Silver Rider Angeles trikes, by raising their hands in the air.
After the presentation, Gibbons and Buddin opened the storage shed to find old bikes they used to ride as students. The two compared the new donated bikes with the old and found humor reminiscing on old school days.
“We had bikes that probably weighed 16 pounds,” said Buddin. “Now, they’re getting old and falling apart. It’s always good to be able to partner with the school district to help out the community with new items like this.”