Charleston might be the best city on the face of the earth. Over the past two weeks, we’ve seen the citizens of Charleston prove that we’re a community full of kindness, generosity, and respect.
In the wake of unspeakable tragedy, we’ve come together as a community to support the victims’ families, Mother Emanuel African Methodist Episcopal Church, and anyone else who needs healing.Truly, Charleston is full of amazing, compassionate human beings. We are Charleston Proud.
Support from Local Churches
After the tragedy, several local churches opened their doors to the community. They held services for the victims and invited both their congregations and non-members to join them in prayer and healing.
These local churches are supporting the Emanuel AME Church during a difficult time, and they are accelerating the healing process with their kindness and sense of community.
Walking Together in Solidarity
On Sunday, June 21st, thousands of community members walked hand-in-hand across Ravenel Bridge to show support for the Emanuel AME Church, the victims, and their families.
From the Huffington Post:
“A line of people packed Arthur Ravenel Jr. Bridge, stretching more than two miles from the town of Mount Pleasant to the city of Charleston. Observers on the bridge, and thousands more at the base, joined hands to create a “unity chain,” then held a moment of silence that lasted five minutes in honor of the fallen.”
Local police estimated there were 10,000 – 15,000 people in attendance for the Bridge to Peace Unity Chain.
As cars drove by, onlookers shouted “Charleston strong!” at the crowd. It was a breathtakingly beautiful moment for Charleston.
Even one of our team members was in attendendance.
Sports Fans Unite
At a recent soccer match between the Charleston Battery and the Charlotte Independence, sports fans came together and showed how much they care about the Charleston community. The Ramblewood Soccer Complex flew the United States, North Carolina, and Mecklenburg County flags at half-mast and there was a moment of silence before the game.
Orange buckets were passed around, collecting donations to support the victims’ families. Fans raised around $900. After the game, fans of both teams joined together in song. The spirit of Charleston’s community shined through.
But that’s not all! Carolina Panthers owner Jerry Richardson, who made his money in South Carolina, also donated a large sum of money to the Emanuel AME Church and the victims’ families. He donated $10,000 to each of the nine victims’ families for funeral costs and other expenses, and also donated $10,000 to the church itself.
Richardson, an inductee in the South Carolina Sports Hall of Fame, cares about Charleston, too. Our community even extends beyond our immediate borders.
More Community Action
Other members of our community have been doing their part, too. Boeing donated another $100,000 to help the church and the community.
Several local restaurants have held fundraisers and donated money, as well. For every Samuel Adams beer it sells, King Street Grille is donating $1. That’s just one example. Other restaurants are collecting money from patrons or just sending a flat donation regardless of sales. It’s remarkable how these businesses, that provide great food and service every day, are giving back to the community.
Many individuals are acting on their own, too. Charleston citizens are using popular online fundraising platforms to give back. Several people are selling #CharlestonStrong t-shirts through Booster clubs and giving all proceeds to the victims’ families.
Sara Graves is one such individual.
On her Booster page, she wrote:
“We all know the story… We also know how our community has come together in prayer, love, and support…. By purchasing this shirt, you can show your dedication to our community and our spirit, and you will also be supporting the Mother Emanuel AME Hope fund.”So many people are donating and offering their time. Residents have raised $926,389 for the families and the church as of Monday, June 29th.
A housekeeping crew from the Medical University of South Carolina’s Environmental Services Department did their part, too. 20 MUSC employees volunteered their time and labor to clean up the inside of the Emanuel AME Church.
At Contract Exteriors, we’re proud to be part of such a strong and tight-knit community. We’ve seen an overwhelming amount of kindness and generosity from the people we see and interact with every day. People like you and people like us.
Through supporting one another, our community has helped these families with their immense burdens. By coming and staying together, Charleston has begun the healing process.
We’re proud of you, Charleston. Thank you to everyone, for everything you do for this amazing community.