Outreach festival seeks to help others
At Carpentersville Baptist Church on Saturday it was all about helping your fellow man.
The church held its annual Fall Community Outreach festival, which included clothing, food, education, evangelism, health screenings and more.
“We've been doing this for about 10 years,” the Rev. Monica Cofer, associated pastor, said. “Every year we try to add a different tent. Basically we want to do the will of God. We want to feed the homeless – we have some we have picked up from shelters here. We also have the clothing and food and the health screenings. There's also an information booth, along with an education booth.”
Cofer said that in today's economy, many folks struggle with their bills – such as utilities. At the event, there was a tent set up to help provide relief.
“There are people in our congregation who work with that,” she said. “We just want to minister to the needs of the people in any way we can.”
There was also face painting for kids and hair cuts for those who may not have the means to handle it themselves. Everything, from the items to services, was available free of charge.
“We also have a lady doing nails, and that's a bit different since it is a luxury,” Cofer said. “Each person takes up the time, though, and shuts down their shops to do things here. We also have our choirs available for some musical entertainment. It's free for whoever. It's a community effort, and we want to reach out. Even if someone comes through – and they don't have to be homeless – if they just need something we can provide, we want to help.”
At the education tent were Midland Valley High School principal Carl White and Aiken High School principal Garen Cofer. Cofer has been a member since childhood and invited White to join.
“It's about the church, but it's more about the community and giving back to the community,” White said. “We have information on scholarships and career choices, and we're also giving away some prizes and school supplies.”
Monica said that while the church may not be the biggest around, the congregation just wants to reach out and help in any way it can.
“It's not that people are rich and have so much, but what we do have we want to share with others,” she said.
Scott Rodgers is the news editor at the North Augusta Star and has been with the paper since January 2013 after previously working at the Aiken Standard. He is a graduate of Alvernia University and currently attends Drexel University.