CRESTVIEW, Florida – Today, the reality of hunger in a land of prosperity, is staggering. More than 2.9 million households with homebound seniors go hungry or do not know where their next meal is coming from, according to Feeding America. One local organization was honored by Gulf Power recently for helping to feed the hungry and for their overall community outreach efforts and service to others.
Concerned Citizens Outreach Workers, a nonprofit based in Crestview dedicated to feeding and clothing its clients, was one of two organizations recognized Tuesday night at Gulf Power’s annual Power of Service Awards. Royal Generation Development of Kings and Queens was also recognized for its commitment to improving the community it serves. Each organization was awarded a $2,500 grant.
“This is our opportunity to publicly acknowledge those who may go unnoticed but serve a vital role in trying to solve important issues in their communities,” said Bentina Terry, Gulf Power’s Vice President of Customer Services and Sales. “The organizations we honor may be small in size but they have a big impact. They quietly serve others and this is our way to thank them and celebrate these groups who remind us how important it is to help others.”
When considering recipients, Gulf Power employees looked for groups that support minorities and underrepresented populations. The energy company started the Power of Service awards in 2012 to celebrate Dr. Martin Luther King Jr.’s legacy of service, and recognizes organizations that are dedicated to improving the lives of others.
Since the inception of the award program, Gulf Power has recognized 43 organizations in Northwest Florida and awarded more than $104,500.
“We are not just employees of Gulf Power,” said Terry. “We live, work and play in these wonderful communities and we want to play a part in their success.”
Founded in 1993, Concerned Citizens Outreach Workers has worked tirelessly to provide hope for those living in need in Crestview. Every other week the group serves up to 100 hot meals for its clients both on site and via delivery to the homebound. They also operate a clothing closet where they provide free clothes to their clients, and each year they collect jackets for children within the community. Other outreach efforts include sponsoring classrooms, the yearly Back-to-School Bash to collect school supplies, the Pastors and Community dinner and an annual Thanksgiving dinner.
Royal Generation Development of Kings and Queens is a nonprofit 501(C)(3) community youth program dedicated to harvesting, investing, developing and educating young men and women to help them become successful adults and empowering them to make a positive difference in their community. The organization’s aim is to prepare participants to face the challenges of adulthood through committed mentoring and tutoring. Through educational programs, community involvement and positive reinforcement, this organization forms a foundation for youth built on self-confidence and responsibility with a goal to propel them to reach their potential and become Kings and Queens within their community.