AUGUSTA, Ga. (WJBF)– Through Guitar Pull, The CSRA’s United Way has been helping families for 19 years. United Way’s President and CEO, LaVerne Gold, puts the initiative like this: “It takes a village to raise a child, and it takes a community to raise annual funds for The United Way campaign.”
Guitar Pull does just that. Thousands come out each year to hear artists sing, but Gold explained the benefit is much more than fun and music. “Since 2000, we have received over $400,000 from the Guitar Pull, and what we use that for is to provide assistance to families in need,” She told me.
The concert has helped thousands of families since it kicked off 19 years ago. The 2017 lineup included Darius Rucker, Jake Owen, Randy Houser, Lee Brice, Brett Young, and Big & Rich.
Gold explained many programs benefiting United Way are “needs based”, meaning a person has to be below the poverty line to be eligible for funding. Through Guitar Pull though, United Way is able to assist families who ordinarily would not need help.
“It’s not always income based,” Gold said. “It could be a family of two, both working, then all of a sudden one loses a job. Or the income might be cut by half because one is going from part-time to full-time.”
And for some, Guitar pull will put a Thanksgiving meal on the table and presents under the Christmas tree.
“I was lucky enough to grow to where that was never something I dealt with, so it means a lot that it is giving back to our local people here,” Jamie Landrum, a concert goer said.
“It warms my heart to know that thee are places and concerts like this that give back to children or families who are not as fortunate,” Tiffany Faulk, another concert goer told me. “Just to see a smile on a child’s face is worth it.”
Gold said Guitar Pull raises at least $25,000 each year to help families right here in the CSRA.