HOPE organization opens water company location at VCC mall

The HOPE Organization recently opened a new retail store at Virginia Center Commons mall.

HOPE, which stands for Helping Our People Eat, was founded by Ollie Harvey (pictured) in 1999 and its mission is to provide for families in need throughout the Richmond and Henrico community.

The non-profit organization has been fulfilling that mission through an array of services including food and clothing for families in need. Harvey also has night care, through which she keeps kids for free while their parents work.

“I inherited the gift of giving from my grandmother,” Harvey said. “I will do everything I can to help the community.”

Harvey also operates a summer feeding program that will start soon. Last year the HOPE Organization was able to feed 250 families.

“I’ve worked with Miss Ollie for 10 years.” said staff member Elliott Eddie. “I’ve gone with her on runs to get housing for families and helped her feed the community.”

In 2010, Harvey bought her own water company and decided to sell her own water bottles after getting the idea observing people buying bottled water at Walmart.

“I was making $4,500 dollars a month at Edlow’s pharmacy and Farmer’s Food until they went out of business,” said Harvey. “Then I went door to door and made $500 dollars a month. I got young boys to help me pass out the water and the parents were happy because it was keeping their children out of the streets.”

When Harvey heard about the earthquake in Haiti, she sent all of her water over to help the families.

Now, she feels that this is the time to start the HOPE water company again. The Virginia Center Commons has given the HOPE water company an opportunity to own a space for the lifetime of the mall.

Not only will the store sell water, but it also will carry a jewelry line that includes bracelets, necklaces, earrings and more. Nothing will be more than $5, and the proceeds will go towards the HOPE organization.

During the event attendees will have the opportunity to purchase raffle tickets to win prizes, including two tickets to a moonlight cruise. The winner will be picked June 15.

Harvey plans to start a clothing line featuring t-shirts with the HOPE organization logo. The grand opening is June 3 from 10 a.m. to 9 p.m. The water can also be purchased before the opening at Chuckey’s Bodega at 4900 Nine Mile Road.

For details about the HOPE organization, contact Harvey by e-mail at .(JavaScript must be enabled to view this email address) or by phone at (804) 648-1160.
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The First Unitarian Universalist Church of Richmond, 1000 Blanton Ave., will host Gallery at First UU, its 52nd annual Fine Arts and Craft Show, Sept. 20-24. The show features an eclectic mix of oil paintings, watercolors, lithographs, fiber art, photographs, pottery, furniture, jewelry, stained glass, paper, wood and wearable art from 175 local and regional artists. Prices range from $10 to several thousand dollars. There is no admission charge to the event. Food trucks are planned for Thursday and Friday. For details, call 355-0777, email .(JavaScript must be enabled to view this email address) or find them on Facebook at “GalleryAtFirstUU.” Full text

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