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FCCRD Advisory Board Meeting

Melissa Billey, Project Manager – melissa.a.billey@gmail.com

April 18, 2018

ABBEVILLE — A meeting of the FCCRD Advisory Board was held on April 18, 2018, at 8:30AM, at WCTEL conference room.  Lee Logan, the Chairman of the FCCRD Advisory Board, opened the meeting with a warm welcome and prayer.  Breakfast was provided by WCTEL.

 Wilder Ferreira began the meeting with the introduction of the new employee, Melissa Billey.  She will be assisting Wilder as the FCCRD Project Manager as the FCCRD continues to grow.  Wilder gave a presentation on the many projects that have been completed, projects that are on-going, and future projects that are in the works.  FCCRD has made such a difference in assisting the rural areas of Abbeville County, McCormick County, and the Starr-Iva Community.  The development and continued support in agri-business, education, entrepreneurship, and the arts has been seen and felt in each community in these counties.  The passion for partnerships and alliances working together can be felt from each individual in attendance that represented these areas.  Wilder Ferreira’s expertise has been utilized by the FCCRD to help revitalize and grow programs to assist the communities.

 Lee Logan followed Wilder with information on the Abbeville Promise.  The Abbeville Promise Kick-off Event is scheduled for April 19, 2018.  Lee also updated the group on how well the projects are coming together and impacting the areas.  Some projects that are making an impact are:

  • The Aquaponics Project at Diamond Hill Elementary where 6th grade students in Ms. Busby’s class are learning about plants grown in water.
  • The Starr-Iva Alliance that is focusing on workshops, public relations, and consulting to promote small businesses in the Starr and Iva areas.
  • The Abbeville County Youth Leadership Program that will focus on high school seniors to promote soft skills and leadership.
  • The McCormick County Workforce Development Program that will focus on high school juniors to obtain an IT Professional Certification upon graduation for job placement.

 The meeting was closed by Lee Logan.

Wilder Ferreira, FCCRD, speaking during the FCCRD Advisory Board Meeting at WCTEL on April 18, 2018.

United Abbeville Group Meeting

Melissa Billey, Project Manager – melissa.a.billey@gmail.com

March 19, 2018

ABBEVILLE — A meeting of the United Abbeville Group was held on March 13, 2018, at 6:00PM at The Renaissance Retirement Center, 5 Frank Pressly Drive, Due West, SC 29639.  Paul Bell, The Renaissance Retirement Center, opened the meeting with a warm welcome.  Dinner was provided by The Renaissance Retirement Center.

 Lee Logan began the meeting with updates on the Capital Projects Sales Tax.  The “Penny Tax” would be utilized to benefit Abbeville County in funding projects to improve the communities in this county.  “We are dedicated to fund projects to create jobs and opportunities,” Lee explained.  This is an, “all or nothing, pay as you go, no bond,” investment in Abbeville County.  Brad Evans, Freshwater Coast Community Foundation, gave an update on the Freshwater Coast Center for Rural Development (FCCRD) and its partners.  He spoke about the work on the Abbeville Promise that will be beneficial to the students of Abbeville County that are graduating high school.  The Abbeville Promise will allow these students to attend Piedmont Technical College (PTC) with no cost to them for tuition.  Brad Evans also spoke about the advances that FCCRD, along with its partners, has made in Abbeville County, McCormick County, and southern Anderson County.  Many opportunities have been created and many more are in the works for these counties.  A collaboration between FCCRD, SCBDC, local consultants, and Piedmont Technical College has opened the door for workshops that benefit small business owners.  These workshops offer professional development and business training in marketing, finance, start-up, human resources, bookkeeping, computer software, sales, investment, and social media.  More than 100 businesses have participated in these workshops with an estimated 500 attendees of business owners and employees.  There have also been many grants awarded to fund revitalization in the communities.  In education and entrepreneurship, a Youth Entrepreneurship Education Program was created through a Business Plan Competition held at the high schools.  There was also a Workforce Development Program created through the Abbeville County Education Week.  The next person to speak was Dr. Betty Jo Hall.  She gave a school update for Abbeville County.  The meeting was finished out with Stephen Taylor giving the Strategic Plan update and both, Stephen Taylor and David Garner updating everyone on the litter campaign.  The meeting was closed by Bryan McClain, Chairman.

Brad Evans, FCCF, speaking during the United Abbeville Group Meeting at The Renaissance Retirement Center on March 13, 2018.