MPact Macon holds first family fall festival

MPact Macon is a newly founded community service organization dealing with social issues in the local area through programs, forums and other projects and events.

Made up of young professionals in the Macon area, MPact is becoming one of the city’s outlets for social issue tensions among residents.

Trey Gordon, President of MPact, stated that the goals of the program are to “broaden the horizons of what’s going on,” and to close the “racial divide [by] trying to get the community to work together to become one powerful force, creating one Macon.”

Amber Jones, MPact Treasurer, stated that MPact holds the idea that “if [people] want to live here, they should be able to live here and not feel bound by the color of their skin or the color of someone else’s skin.”

Founded by 13 young professionals, the organization had its first forum, titled “Change: A Community Forum” on July 18, 2013, 5 days after the verdict of the George Zimmerman trial was decided. The forum discussed, according to the MPact Facebook Event, “the changes that must take place within Macon, Georgia in order for greater racial understanding and healing to take place.” The forum was openly addressed that it was “a forum where anyone can speak without judgment, without political agenda, and without fear.”

Speaking more about the first forum, Jones said, “People were so outraged and upset that they were actually talking about race which is something that doesn’t happen in Macon.” She continued, “It’s a huge problem here, but a problem that no one is willing to talk about or address publically. We had a forum to discuss [racial issues] because we felt it was a very important time not just for our country, but also for Macon.”

Commenting that it was well attended, Jones said that the forum received “a lot of response from both races.”

Gordon continued emphasizing that the forum “just covered the bases about what people [were] afraid to talk about.” He stated that “in order for us to understand we have to talk about what it going on and what is not going on.”

The productive and positive response from the Trayvon Martin-George Zimmerman forum has inspired more forum and events for MPact Macon. The organization will be hosting a Fall Festival located in Tattnall Square Park on October 10.

About the upcoming Fall Festival, Amber Jones commented, “We are definitely open for volunteers.” She continued saying that soon, “we are going to launch a volunteer website, hopefully by the end of this month, where anyone who wants to get involved with us can see our whole calendar.”

According to Gordon, if Mercer and other surrounding college students were to become involved in and volunteer for MPact, it will “definitely help MPact more than we can imagine.”

Jones continued saying, “We definitely want to see some response from Mercer students. We want to create relationships and understanding. Volunteers from Mercer would be awesome. We are looking for Mercer students to really get involved.”

Volunteers can not only help serve at the Fall Festival, but also with an upcoming Elementary school reading program.

The goal of MPact with the reading program, according to Jones, is to “start with younger children and give them opportunities to face racial issues.” She elaborated saying, “In Macon, there’s a strong private school system. Most of the white children go to private school and most of the black children go to public school. There’s no way to evolve unless they find their own relationships, make their own judgments and realize that people are people, no matter what color their skin.”

Currently, MPact Macon is undergoing the process to make the organization formal and to officially become a non-profit. To become involved through volunteering, contact Amber Jones at [email protected]