Tuesday, December 19, 2017

Winston Plywood Hosts "Christmas From the Heart"

Christmas is a time of giving and for the folks at Louisville's Winston Plywood facility, it is a time to
Team members for "Christmas from the Heart"
give back to the community. Team leaders at WP gathered on Tuesday (Dec 19) to host "Christmas from the Heart" as they presented a roomful of toys and bikes to local Child Protective Services officials for children in Winston County that are placed in foster homes or are in times of need.

WP President and CEO John Pierce expressed the company's thoughts - "We were here after the tornado for the community and the community has provided support to us through that time. We feel blessed by this community and we want to give back. Everyone has a heart for kids that don't have what they should. How could we not give?"

Joanne Clark along with Whitney Black, Barbara Sims, Florine Nicholson and Yolanda Bishop with Child Protective Services were on hand to accept the gifts for children in need. Clark noted that there were 33 kids in foster care in Winston County and an additional 25 or more that the agency works with in some capacity. Clark indicated that in most cases, these children were not part of Angel Trees or Toys for Tots and were often overlooked at Christmas.

Clark thanked Winston Plywood and said, "It's so nice to have someone come to us and provide help without us having to ask for assistance."
Bikes, toys and dolls provided by Winston Plywood for area kids in foster care

Plant Manager Ken Carter thanked the WP team members for their work on the project. "We wanted to keep it in Louisville. When Georgia Pacific shut down, a lot of people didn't get to have a Christmas with the loss of their jobs. This started with the idea of let's just get a bike or two and our team members jumped on board. We plan to keep it going and do this every Christmas."

The City of Louisville, in cooperation with the State of Mississippi, Winston Plywood & Veneer and
its parent company, Atlas Holdings LLC rebuilt a new, state-of-the-art plywood mill that has helped revitalize a community devastated by a tornado three years ago. The original mill, built in the 1960s and idled since 2009, was destroyed on April 28, 2014 when an F4 tornado struck Louisville. Winston Plywood & Veneer has team members from 14 counties including Winston, Neshoba, Choctaw, Oktibbeha, and Noxubee.

"We feel this is a completion of the circle. The surrounding communities, the City of Louisville, and the State of Mississippi supported us in our effort to bring this industry back to Louisville. We feel we have been given this opportunity to, in a small way, pay it back to some of the most helpless and needy in our area."