Sun | Dec 10, 2017

Tashana Davidson finds joy in giving

Published:Thursday | September 28, 2017 | 12:00 AMCarl Gilchrist
Some of the items handed out at the back-to-school fair put on by Tashana Davidson.
Tashana Davidson says giving back to persons in need is rewarding.
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CENTRAL YORK, St Thomas:

"I'm blessed and I'm quite fortunate when it comes to getting things, so one day I thought, 'Why not help others, why not give back?' That's how Helping Hands started," Tashana Davidson explained to Rural Xpress on Tuesday.

Helping Hands recently assisted scores of children from basic to high-school levels with back-to-school items following the staging of the third annual treat at Venom Headquarters in Central York, St Thomas.

"The turnout this year was the best in the three years that I've staged the event. I honestly never expected so many persons to attend this year," Davidson pointed out.

Students from Seaforth Primary, Seaforth High, Morant Bay Primary, the Seventh-day Adventist, and the A-Grade basic school in Central York, and other schools, turned out and enjoyed the occasion.

Those who attended got items such as school bags, shoes, books, pencils, pencil cases, markers, rulers, geometry sets, lunch bags, among other items.

The first event in 2015 gave Davidson a taste of how good it feels to give, so she decided that it would not be a one-off event but rather, it would become an annual affair.

Shortly after the event, she began drafting letters and sending them out to solicit support.

"The response was great and right now I even have a few die-hard sponsors who not only sponsor the event, but encourage me to continue doing it," she revealed.

The beneficiaries have played their role in ensuring the treat continues, as they have shown a lot of appreciation for it.

"The response from the community has been very, very, very good and that's why I even did it the second year. The first year, we just had books and pencils to hand out, but everyone appreciated it. Last year, we stepped up, we handed out more things. Apart from the back-to-school items, we served snacks, juice, ice cream and we had a bounce-a-bout. This year we added other stuff, like cake and snow cone, we also brought in a trampoline; and everything was free.

"Let me tell you one of the main reasons why I'm continuing this. Last year, I helped a lady who has three children and is having difficulties raising them by herself, and after the treat, she came over and thanked me a thousand times. It really moved me."

It's not that Davidson has a lot of possessions, it's just that she knows what it means to be in need and not having anyone there to help.

"I grew up not knowing my father. I struggled to go to school and so many times I wished I had someone there to help, pretty much like what I'm doing right now. So doing this means a lot to me. The people who benefit appreciate it. The support is there from people who want to give, and I feel good knowing I'm doing something to benefit those in need."

Davidson says she uses her skills as an event planner to earn an income to support herself and her family.

rural@gleanerjm.com