Business class donates to children’s center


Donation recipients, the Durant Children’s Center, helps children who experienced abuse

Katrina Moses, Staff Writer

The Francis Marion University (FMU) non-profit business class presented a check worth $2,500 to the Durant Children’s Center, a local children’s housing facility, on Dec. 5, 2013.

            The Durant Children’s Center, a partner of the Pee Dee coalition, identifies itself as “The House Where Healing Begins” and assists those who have witnessed or been domestically or sexually abused.  The center also works toward the diagnosis and prevention of abuse.

            Dr. Joe Aniello, coordinator of the non-profit program, said the donation to the Pee Dee Coalition was part of a project that the non-profit business class had been working on since August.  For the project, the students had to a way to raise funds and then give them to an organization of their choosing.

            “Anytime we can get the kids out of the classroom…the school believes that that facilitates better comprehension,”Aniello said.

Aniello said this process is called “experiential learning,” and his goal as a professor is to inspire students to attempt a career in non-profit.  He explained that he wants students to be aware of career options in business and tells his students that business management is more than just owning a business.

            Four students from the course attended the presentation: Mi’kyel Nero, senior general management major, Mary Graham, sophomore, Latasha Roberson, senior Spanish major and Stephanie Bracey, junior general management major.

            Roberson explained some of the methods the class used to fundraise.

“We advertised to people we knew,” Roberson said.  “We would go around to faculty, around the school . . . marketing through Facebook.”

            Bracey said she initially suggested giving to the Durant Children’s Center.

Bracey and her husband learned about the youth group through the work they do with a youth group at her church.

Bracey said she believes the center’s interview room, the area which the children discuss what they have seen or endured, needs more video equipment.  For example, files from 1993 have to be put in the database.

She added that the counselors are also working to learn how to conduct parent-child interaction therapies effectively.

“The therapy is for those that something has happened in life, and they are trying to deal with it and they just need a little extra help,” Karen Holmes, center director, said.  “Very normal people come to therapy.”

            Nero said everyone who participated in the project only has high hopes for the center and wanted the funds to be beneficial to its mission and purpose.

            “Hopefully the check will help them financially,” Nero said.  “It’s for the kids, so it’s a good thing.”