A Valdosta State University student who’s originally from Tifton is celebrating this Christmas season by giving back to an organization in her hometown.
On Christmas Day, 19-year-old Marleshia Davis provided toys to some local children through Ruth’s Cottage, which provides a 12-bed confidential safe shelter to victims and their children in need of emergency residential services. According to their website, programs for children and adults are centered on safety planning, enhancing life skills, building self esteem, improving anger and stress management and building communication skills.
Davis says the donation was a surprise. She purchased the toys with her own money but is planning to open the project to the public next year so others can help donate. She said the idea to donate toys to Ruth’s Cottage started in early November.
“I feel sometimes that Ruth’s Cottage gets overlooked during toy drives. You never hear about them getting toys,” she commented.
Davis said this is a jump-start to what she has planned for the future.
“I’ve always wanted to have my own organization to give back to the community,” she said, noting that her donation to Ruth’s Cottage is already allowing her to give back, even if it’s something small.
“Kids are not asking for much,” she said. “The littlest thing can spark their joy.”
Davis is a sophomore at VSU, majoring in nursing. It has always been her dream to start a non-profit organization to help kids. She says she’s not donating to Ruth’s Cottage because of the recognition; she looks forward to giving back. She said some people are not fortunate enough to have as much as others, and she would whether give back knowing she did something.
To contact reporter Latasha Ford, call 382-4321.