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Greg Smith’s mission lives on. Greg was the 2nd recipient to receive the Noble Cause Award. Fort Smith Receives $1M Grant for Riverfront Trails.
Arthur J. Gallagher Co. is pleased to award the Noble Cause Award to Charolette Tidwell with Antioch Youth and Family for her efforts in fighting hunger in the Fort Smith Region. The Noble Cause Award is an award honoring people whose service in their community makes a difference. The award helps to give support and generate awareness to people such as Charolette, whose commitment is unwavering. Their impact is far-reaching. Yet their service is often unknown.
Charolette’s mission to fight area hunger began when she was serving alongside her husband, Sargent Tidwell, at the Lincoln Youth Service Center. She noticed that many of the children were not receiving enough food. They were hungry. This realization led to a larger issue. Not only were children hungry, but their families and the elderly were facing food insecurity issues as well. This awareness led to the creation of Antioch Youth & Family, a non-profit organization that now serves more than 3,200 families and 7,500 individuals each month within a 20-mile radius of Fort Smith.
“Fighting hunger is our business,” states Charolette. “Seniors shouldn’t have to choose between filling their refrigerator or filling their prescriptions. Families shouldn’t be asked to sacrifice hot meals to pay the utility bills. Kids shouldn’t go to sleep with empty stomachs. Not in this country.”
With no staff and no public funding, a group of steadfast volunteers collect, package, serve, and deliver thousands of nutritionally balanced bags of groceries at their downtown center and throughout the community. They have no computers, limited transportation, and no phones apart from the cell phones of volunteers. Antioch relies solely on monetary contributions to purchase food and transportation donations to deliver the food to the elderly. Charolette has found ways to stretch their resources to serve those in need. With just $100, she can purchase 500 lbs. of food.
“Charlotte Tidwell is a Fort Smith angel,” expresses Philip Merry, Area President of Arthur J. Gallagher.“She redefines the term ‘servant leader.’ She epitomizes the type of hero that Noble Cause Awards wants to discover, help, and celebrate. What a wonderful example of the “Pay it Forward” concept she truly is!”
In spite of the challenges of working in these limited conditions, Antioch has added a youth choir to their primary service of food distribution for the hungry. The choir, Rated PG (Praise Generation), under the Founder/Director Anitta Smith-Brown sounds a joyful note during the delivery of needed supplies to the elderly.
Antioch is also working on community fairs, a community garden, and other ideas to address the hunger need in the region. Charolette Tidwell prefers to focus on dreams rather than on challenges. It is this attitude that has allowed Antioch to make such a difference in Fort Smith.← Older posts