Winn-Dixie donates to United Way of Selma-Dallas County

Published 7:30 am Thursday, January 19, 2023

By Travis Gupton

Selma Times-Journal

United Way of Selma and Dallas County was dealt a tough blow last Thursday when their building was destroyed by the tornado that hit Selma.
Despite the loss of the building, United Way has still been helping the relief effort in Selma.
On Wednesday, the group received another big boost in their effort to help the community as they received a $100,000 donation from Winn Dixie. Executive Director of United Way of Selma and Dallas County Jeff Cothran accepted the check in front of the Winn Dixie in Selma with a huge smile.
“I’m just gobsmacked,” he said. “It’s such a generous gift from somebody you always just take for granted, the grocery store. They are part of our community and our neighbors, Here they are stepping up and helping take care of this community. We are just so pleased to be able to partner with Winn Dixie and have this money come in and help our friends and neighbors recover.”
This is not the only funds that United Way received in an effort to help those effected by the storm.
“We have been made aware that Coca-Cola corporation is making a gift of $100,000 and our neighbors International Paper are making a gift,” Cothran said. “The power company is also making a gift. Talk about heroes, they got everybody hooked up with electricity so quick and they’re writing a check to help out on the recovery.”
Winn Dixie Regional Vice President Lynn Rushing presented the check on behalf of the Winn Dixie Corporation. After seeing the destruction first hand, Rushing felt that Winn Dixie needed to do everything they could to help Selma rebuild.
“At Winn-Dixie, we are committed to supporting the communities we serve in every way possible,” Rushing said. “As a community, we are stronger together and we are proud to partner with local organizations to support our Selma neighbors during this difficult time.”
The funds that United Way received will be used for long-term recovery to help those who still need assistance.
“We are going to be setting up what’s called a long-term recovery committee,” Cothran said. “We will have it made up of all the other charities and other people within the community. We are going to sit down and look at all the cases where people don’t have insurance and access to FEMA disaster funds. We are going to try to take that list and windle it down as much as much as we can. As fortunate as we are to have these gifts, a couple of hundred thousand dollars or three or four hundred thousand dollars is going to go just so far. So, we are going to try and pair it with everybody else that may have gotten some funds and see what we can do to help the most people.”