Operation Inspiration: When Community Comes Together After Crisis

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What happens when a community is affected by a tragedy? A close, loving community comes together in a time of need. They contribute. They donate. But it doesn’t just happen. People have to organize, advertise and work. That work is sometimes done without recognition. This writer is proud to recognize a true “Good Samaritan.”

On August 12, 2014, dozens of tenants in a Magna apartment building were displaced from their homes and a family dog died as the result of a fire, and they were in need of every type of basic necessity, from toiletries, clothes, food, everything.

Meet Kelly Peterson. Kelly stepped up and helped organize food and clothing drives and helped the grateful victims of the fire by obtaining and distributing donations of much needed items with the community’s assistance, and he hasn’t stopped helping.

The latest effort is the “Operation Inspiration Food Drive” and the new challenge issued by Kelly this evening when Kelly challenged every Facebook friend, co-worker and Legacy Initiative team member to spend at least $10-20 on non-perishable food items, in turn donating them to the hunger barrels located throughout Magna, Utah from September 4-20.

The Legacy Initiative is a part of Operation: Inspiration which is a Utah County based charitable organization that performs homeless outreach in addition to food, blood and clothing drives and works in conjunction with Magna F.A.C.T. Inc., which offers assistance to homeless individuals including:
• Transitional Living Case Management
• Victim Advocacy
• Court-appointed Family Advocacy
• Child Advocacy
• Court Mentors
• Wrap-around Basic Needs Essentials
• Group Support
• Job Support
• Educational Advocacy
• Anchor Outreach
• Sub 4 Santa
Emergency food, clothing, personal hygiene and basic need supplies through Magna F.A.C.T. are available at 9113 West 2700 South (Old Magna Main) in Magna, Utah 84044 (801-250-4811).

Kelly is pictured here donating 17 items he purchased for $19.18 and encourages anyone who makes a donation to post a picture on social media and challenge their friends, family and co-workers to also donate as you never know when you might be the one in need.

Volunteers such as Kelly are a true inspiration and Utah is blessed to have him. Please keep the less fortunate in mind, especially as we move into the holiday season and the colder weather means more people are truly in need. Give what you can, even if it is a can of food, a blanket or clothing it all adds up, in more ways than one.

Photo Credit: stormgirl161 under (CC BY 3.0) via Deviant Art and Gradi Jordan