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VCVB wants to promote your business



The Vicksburg Convention & Visitors Bureau wants to promote your business.

Executive Director Laura Beth Strickland sent the following email looking for videos and descriptions of local businesses to include in a longer video promoting Vicksburg.

We are preparing for National Travel & Tourism Week and need your help. Please send me a video to 601-831-3373 (15-30 seconds) or to my email [email protected] so we can create videos promoting your business, services, and appreciation for your customers. I need it sent it to me so I can save it. I can’t save it from Facebook. If you are currently closed, a message about your business and appreciation for your guests would be great too!

National Travel & Tourism Week is Sunday, May 3, through Saturday, May 9, celebrating the #SpiritofTravel.

Here is a sample script:

Sample Script:


I am Laura Beth Strickland with Laura Beth’s Restaurant. We are OPEN from 11 am – 8 pm offering curbside and delivery. We miss visiting with our customers and hope to see you all soon!

Alternate Ending Line:

Follow us on Facebook at X for updates!

Thank you to our customers for supporting us!

We would like to thank our guests and cannot wait to host you again soon!

For more information, call the VCVB at 800-221-3536.


Alcorn president to participate in ‘Real Conversations, Real Impact’ panel



Dr. Felecia Nave, Alcorn State University president (photo courtesy ASU)

Dr. Felecia Nave, Alcorn State University president, is among four nonprofit powerhouse leaders who are coming together Tuesday, Nov. 17, from noon to 1 p.m. for the first of three virtual panel discussions entitled “Real Conversations, Real Impact.”

Change Summer, the leading nonprofit for year-round, social-emotional development and enrichment for youth from under-resourced communities, is the organization behind the series

Part one will cover the topic “Implementing Anti-racist, Systemic Change in the Nonprofit Sector.” Dr. Nave brings with her a unique perspective as an HBCU leader with a passion for identifying and developing multiple pathways toward success. She recognizes that not all children have equal access to information and therefore may not be prepared for continued success.

“You have to give them information early, immerse them and excite them,” she said.

Dr. Nave will speak alongside three other influential nonprofit leaders:

“Change Summer has a responsibility to the students and families we serve,” said Josh Phillips, Founder and chief executive officer of Change Summer. “The communities from which they come have been hit the hardest by the pandemic, the resulting economic recession, and social injustice.”

Change Summer believes unequal access to high-quality summer programming is a solvable problem. The New York-based nonprofit partners with school organizations across the Northeast United States to create high-quality, customized summer opportunities for their students. Change Summer’s programs provide students from under-resourced communities with a summer experience that increases independence, curiosity, confidence and responsibility – all critical skills for a successful future.

“Our north star has always been an equal opportunity for all. And now, even more, we feel a deep responsibility to close the opportunity and fairness gaps that pervade American society,” Phillips said.

While Change Summer primarily addresses those gaps through overnight camp experiences, the nonprofit is an advocate and driver for real, sector-wide change at its organizational core.

To that end, Change Summer developed this panel series, which will tackle critical topics that can catalyze the deep and lasting change required for greater equity.

For more information about Change Summer, visit

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Kirk Brothers Ford teams with Toys for Tots



Jess Willis, Amanda Sanderson and Charles Cooper with Kirk Brothers Ford in Vicksburg hope to fill up the truck bed with toys for needy children this Christmas. (photo by Thomas Parker)

Kirk Brothers Ford in Vicksburg is an official Toys for Tots drop off location this Christmas season.

Charles Cooper with Kirk Brothers said they hope to fill a 2019 Ford Raptor pickup located inside the dealership’s showroom with new, unwrapped toys.  Then, they’d like to fill it again and again.

“This has been a difficult year for many people,” said Amanda Sanderson who works with internet sales at the dealership, “but no child should be forgotten this Christmas.”

Since its inception, the U.S. Marine Corps Reserves Toys for Tots program has donated 313 million toys to 151 million children.

It began  in 1947 when Major Bill Hendricks, USMCR, and a group of Marine Reservists in Los Angeles collected and distributed 5,000 toys to needy children. The idea came from Bill’s wife, Diane.  In the fall of 1947, Diane handcrafted a Raggedy Ann doll and asked Bill to deliver the doll to an organization, which would give it to a needy child at Christmas. When Bill determined that no agency existed, Diane told Bill that he should start one. He did.

Sanderson said that everyone who donates will be entered into a drawing for a $100 gift card.

To donate a new, unwrapped toy, stop by the dealership at 2431 North Frontage Road. It’s open from 8 a.m. until 6 p.m. Monday through Saturday.

Grenada based Kirk Brothers acquired the former Vicksburg Ford earlier this year.

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MDHS requesting proposals for TANF grants



The Mississippi Department of Human Services is requesting proposals from organizations best positioned to provide services in low income, at-risk areas of the state. The RFP is scheduled to be issued Monday, Nov. 2.

The agency will primarily invest Temporary Assistance for Needy Families block grant dollars, in concert with public and private partners to fund the programs outlined in the RFP.

“Our mission at MDHS is to make certain essential services available, while serving as good stewards of taxpayer money,” said MDHS Executive Director Robert G. “Bob” Anderson in a statement. “We are committed to providing statewide service delivery to our clients, and we need competitive proposals from across the state to accomplish that goal.”

The RFP will request services in the following areas:

Afterschool Program Activities

MDHS is soliciting nonprofit organizations and non-federal entities (i.e., state government; local school districts) to implement a program for age appropriate services, in multiple locations, with a priority given to entities that target children and youth attending high poverty/low performing schools and/or at-risk youth attending schools in high poverty areas where high juvenile justice referrals take place. Programs will service the target populations during non-school hours or periods when school is not in session such as afterschool and summer recess. Programs should give preference to those that receive MDHS services.

Parenthood Initiative

MDHS is soliciting nonprofit organizations and non-federal entities (i.e., state government; local school districts), in multiple locations, to provide and coordinate a wide spectrum of parent-focused programs to support the formation and maintenance of two-parent families that improve family stability and functioning. Services provided should support overall goals of safety, permanency, and well-being for children and families.

The purpose of the Parenthood Initiative is to train, educate, encourage, and assist parents in becoming knowledgeable and assuming responsibility for the nurturing, financial, growth and developmental needs of their children. In addition, the Parenthood initiative should strive to demonstrate the ability to collaborate with other service providers and community stake holders to increase support for and accountability to the families.

Upon award, subgrantees will be required to prepare and submit demographic and outcome reports designed by MDHS. Subgrantees shall submit these reports by a MDHS designated due date (no more than monthly; no less than quarterly). Evaluation and outcome reports are an integral element of the program’s ongoing planning, design and implementation. An effective report that evaluates specific targets enables the subgrantee to make informed decisions about changes that the program may need.

To further develop quality MDHS partnerships, MDHS will offer a general grant writing training free of charge for organizations interested in responding to MDHS solicitations. The training will be conducted at the MDHS State Office Building (South Tower of the City Centre building), located at 200 South Lamar Street, Jackson, on Thursday, Oct. 29, 2020. Training will begin at 8:30 a.m. and end by noon.

The training will be archived for those who are not able to attend Oct. 29, and will subsequently be offered Nov. 5, 12 and 19 at the same time through Zoom. On Oct. 30, MDHS will provide registration instructions for the November training sessions.

The training, which will be conducted by MDHS staff, will cover all aspects of grant writing from the seven basic elements of a strong grant proposal to finalizing the proposal for submission.

“We’re pleased to be able to offer this as a service to anyone wishing to become a partner of the agency,” Anderson said. “This will provide a great benefit to our key stakeholders, and I encourage anyone wishing to submit a response to the RFP to take advantage of it.”

The training will be offered in person and virtual. Anyone interested in participating should register for this training opportunity by completing the SmartForm online. A SmartForm will need to be completed per participant, not per company. Space is limited due to social distancing guidelines and in-person training will be first come, first served. If you select “in-person” you will receive a confirmation from Procurement Services as to whether your registration was one of the first 20 received. If space is not available, you will still have the virtual option.

Once registered, those choosing to participate virtually will be given instructions on how to connect via Zoom.

For more information on the training and to view the agenda, visit the MDHS training webpage.

For more information on the request for proposals, go to the MDHS RFP webpage.

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