Annual gift card give away helps families put food on the table

Annual gift card give away helps families put food on the table

The spirit of the holidays could be seen in Downtown Charleston Monday morning, in a line, full of hundreds of people, that filled parts of Meeting Street.

Those people were waiting to get food gift cards from Star Gospel Mission.

The annual gift card give away has been going strong for more than 15 years.

The first ones to receive the $60 gift cards to Bi-Lo said they had been waiting in line since Sunday morning.

Some, like Shirley Bailey, have received a gift card every year for 4 years.

To her, it's worth the 24-hour wait.

"I thank God for that," said Bailey. "For me, to have food on my table and for my family and I'm not ashamed and I'm proud of it."

More than 600 gift cards were distributed, but not all of them went to the people in the line.

"I've saved some cards because I work with several of the local pastors, throughout the Tri-County area, who can give some cards to their neediest people, particularly homebound or shut-in people, as well," said Star Gospel Mission Pastor William Christian.

The gift cards will be used for food purchases only and cannot be used for alcohol or tobacco products.

Those who received a gift card had to be at least 30 years old, with a valid form of identification and a social security card.

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