Fun in The Son lends helping handWednesday, August 04, 2021
BY KEDIESHA PERRY
THIS weekend, thousands of struggling American families will receive much-needed assistance, thanks to the organisers of Fun in The Son Bronx, New York.
“We expect an attendance of 10,000 and another 20,000 online. However, we are prepared to serve 1,500 families in our food distribution, 500 in our clothing distribution, 200 in our pop-up vaccine centre, an additional 100 in our healthy village, 1,000 in the children's village, and 300 in the wealthy village,”co-organiser Pastor Gladstone Johnson from the New Testament Temple Church of God in the Bronx, told the Jamaica Observer.
The outreach programme will be held at Evander Childs Football Field, 800 E Gun Hill Road from 10:00 am – 2:30 pm.
Between 2:30 pm and 8:00 pm, there will be a gospel concert featuring Papa San, Carlene Davis and Judith Gayle while the proclamation of the gospel will be done by Bishop Steve Smith, administrative bishop at the New York Church of God.
It will be streamed on the Fun In The Son Bronx's YouTube and Facebook pages, as well as on the website www.funintheson.nyc.
Started in 2002 by Tommy Cowan and Carlene Davis of Glory Music, Fun In The Son is the largest gospel festival in the English-speaking Caribbean. In 2013, they joined in partnership with Good Neighbors and New Testament Temple to reach communities in the Bronx, New York, with high incidents of drugs and crime.
Meanwhile, Johnson is hoping that the initiative will encourage togetherness especially in these unprecedented times.
“We hope to experience furtherance of our original intent to express a real sense of united support for our community. Through the coming together of our faith community, elected officials, and key business leaders, we can create platforms to tackle the systemic issues of undereducated youth, food insecurity, drugs, and crime, and other underlying challenges. United coordination among the stakeholders is the start of positive change,” he said.
He added that the event is also geared at bringing social relief to those who have been quarantined amidst the novel coronavirus pandemic.
“There seems to be a sense that the community is ready to see their social lives return to a level of normalcy. Our area was hit very hard in the early days of the pandemic, and we are still very cautious not and aware of the new waves and variants that are popping up. We are careful but not fearful. The main difference this year is that some will attend the live staging and others will choose the virtual presentation. As you know there is a gruelling process to secure sound permits and permits associated with using the field that is owned and operated by the state of New York so the protocols will be adhered to, to the extent that the community cooperates,” said Johnson.
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