Reed Foundation spreads its message to Valley Kiwanis Club

Published 9:30 am Thursday, January 12, 2023

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VALLEY — The executive director and the chaplain for the Reed Foundation were guest speakers at Wednesday’s noon hour meeting of the Kiwanis Club of Valley. It was the club’s first meeting of the new year.

A local nonprofit, the Reed Foundation, is having its second anniversary this month after Lanett native Cameron Reed founded it in January 2021. Reed was the manager of the LHS athletic teams, expanded on that role in college and is now the director of logistics for the NFL’s Chicago Bears. Not bad for someone who’s only 24 years old.

“It’s an honor for us to be here today,” said the director, Torrance Rudd. “Thank you for the invitation. I would like to talk about who we are and what we are. Two years ago, Cameron Reed founded this organization with a desire to help the communities of Lanett, West Point and Valley in all aspects of life with a focus on helping youth and local seniors in any way possible.”

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The Reed Foundation is a Christian-based organization with programs designed to assist and uplift people to a better way of life. 

“The Christian faith is all about loving Jesus and loving people,” Rudd said. “That is what we are trying to do with our Foundation and its outreach programs.”

“We are constantly adding more programs that will benefit our community in amazing ways,” Rudd added. “Currently, we have a college scholarship program, a support program, a mentorship program and a senior wave program. We want our communities to know that the fight is never too big or too small. We are here to help.”

The Reed Foundation played host to a scholarship gala last spring to recognize some outstanding local students and to reward their dedicated work in the classroom with scholarships that are helping them attend college. The Foundation’s second annual scholarship gala will be taking place at Valley Community Center on April 29.

“It’s a good event,” Rudd said. “People can dress up if they like, and we will be awarding scholarships for some of our deserving local students.”

“We have two mottos,” Rudd continued, “We want to be all in, and we want to do all we can to bring faith, hope and love to our local communities.”

This past Christmas, the Foundation gave away 25 kids’ bikes and lots of toys. They have also funded trips to skating rinks.

“We want to be a beacon of light for our communities,” Rudd said. “We have had back-to-school events for our kids where we give away book bags and school supplies.”

With Reed’s connections, they have been able to give away items that were signed by Bears players.

As the Reed Foundation chaplain, Matt Lawson prays with people who are struggling with troubled times. 

“I will talk to you if you need to get something off your chest,” he said. “We are serving the local community and want to get to know the people better. We want to be of help and assistance to those who are living in Lanett, West Point and Valley. We want to help them follow their dreams.”

Lawson talked about the Foundation’s mentorship program, which is designed to reach those in the 9-18 age group. “Our mentors serve as positive role models,” he said. “They introduce youth to new experiences and provide support and encouragement during difficult times.”

The Reed Foundation had a very busy year in 2022. They sponsored meals for local seniors and youth football players, had an air fryer giveaway, provided free lawn service for some local seniors, had a cleats and gloves giveaway at a Jylan Ware football camp, partnered with Powell Chapel Church in a back-to-school event, partnered with local churches in a Greater Valley Area Fun Day, held a fall festival in the Jump for Joy Fun Center, joined Team WHIP in its annual walk to raise awareness of breast cancer, had a youth summit featuring some NFL players and hosted a Christmas skate party and toy giveaway.

The Reed Foundation has an office on First Street in downtown Lanett. It can be reached at (706) 773-3228.