Threatening weather not stopping an outdoor charity event

Threatening weather not stopping an outdoor charity event
Stakes beign hammered into the ground before the heavy wind moves inland (Source: Ray Price)

BILOXI, MS (WLOX) - Volunteers hammered tent stakes into the ground, not caring about the stormy skies creeping over the horizon. The 2nd annual Stint in a Tent brought a handful of volunteers to camp out for the night.

Homeless people sleep in the rain, so one night with the threat of a storm is not scaring these people away.

"I think a lot of them already have their heart with helping the homeless," said Cynthia Mangum, the Board President of Loaves and Fishes.

Until about 7 a.m. Saturday, the campers will be living outside to raise money to make sure that homeless and hungry residents on the Coast have access to a daily meal at the non-profit kitchen.

About $2.50 is what it costs the Loaves and Fishes kitchen to provide a person with one meal. These volunteers have committed themselves to raise at least $400 dollars each.

"We figure it would cover one person eating for four months," added Mangum.

Finding the resources to cook at least 4,500 meals every single month isn't easy work. The entire operation relies on donations and fundraisers like this one.

Mangum explains why donations are so important.

"We need the extra money to pick up the difference to make sure that the meals were serving are balanced, and that we can have Fresh vegetables...," she said.

Aside from basic camping necessities like a tent and snacks, the campers were required to show up with a good attitude. Many of the regular volunteers at the kitchen say that positivity is contagious.

"They like it so much, they spread the word and bring family and other friends and continue to serve with us," said Mangum.

Two parents dragged their teenagers out for the night to teach them a lesson in humility. They shouldn't overlook or fear the less fortunate, but should always have their hands out, ready to help and uplift.

"We're very fortunate. My family is extremely blessed, and I want them to understand that blessings can be given as well as received," said Mavis Mason.

Any donations of camping supplies, food, or money can be physically dropped off to Loaves and Fishes, or mailed to P.O. Box 233, Biloxi, MS 39533. Donations can also be made on the Loaves and Fishes Facebook page.

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