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Penny Candy

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One of my most favorite things to do as a child was to walk to Clif Dawson's Country Store. Dawson's was about of a mile up the road. To get there I had to cross the big two-lane, double-yellow-lined road; walk past my elementary school; go over the railroad tracks and cross another two-lane road. It was a very big deal to be old enough to walk to Dawson's without a parent.

Dawson's in the 60's and 70's was a "variety" storethink 7-Eleven. They had just about everything therenewspapers, milk, birthday cardsbut to me there was only one thing that was worth the long walk: penny candy. There was an entire section of the store dedicated to penny candy. I vividly remember walking through that penny candy section. I can still see the glass containers filled with every kind of candy you can imagine.

I sometimes would have a quarter and could select 25 pieces of candy, but often what I had was a dime. Oh, the time I would take to select just the right ten pieces of candy. Black licorice sticks were always a must, but after that the choices were limitless: bubble gum, tootsie rolls, pixie sticks, those sugar-filled wax candies of which I don't even know the name. I would fill my small brown bag with judiciously selected choices and then head home, often eating half of it on the way back. Ten cents went a long way back then.

This morning, my daughter, Anna, walked out of the house with a poster that read, "$5 provides three nutritious meals for three days." She and other students at South Lakes High School are raising money as part of the Feed A Child campaign, a student-led initiative that hopes to raise $20,000 for children in Africa. If I'm doing the math right, that equates to 36,000 meals or 98 children fed for a year. In Sierra Leone, Africa, money still goes a long way.

Their campaign ends on March 30. It reaches beyond South Lakes High School. Students in other high schools are also participating, as are college students across Virginia and even into Georgia. Whether they reach the goal of $20,000 or not, every $5 they earn feeds a child for three days. That's making a difference in the life of a child. That's God at work, caring for the vulnerable.

If you would like to learn more about the Feed A Child campaign, click here.

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