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Heritage Hills shows passion to serve the needy

A Brookhaven non-profit organization has won $10,000 in a cola company contest.

Earlier this summer, Heritage Hills Orphan Ministry was chosen by the Brown Bottling Group to participate in its “Pick Your Charity Promotion.”

Brown Bottling Group of Ridgeland is a franchise distributor for Pepsi Cola and Dr Pepper beverages.

The orphan care advocacy organization, which helps find homes for orphans, competed against Iona House of Jackson and It Still Takes a Village of Natchez.

Voting was from July 5 to July 31.

“I just couldn’t believe we won,” said Misty Holcomb, co-founder of Heritage Hills. “We received updates at the midway point of July to see how we were doing and we were behind then. We started spreading our information out more in the community. Our article in the paper really helped get our name out there.”

Holcomb said getting the community involved was the biggest key to winning. Within two weeks, Heritage Hills caught up quickly and ended up winning the contest by a large margin.

After winning $10,000, many plans on how to use the money are in the works for the ministry.

They currently provide four adoption grants a year. Now with the extra money on hand, they can add two more.

Adoption grants help families with fees involved in the application process of adoption. The grant they offer is $1,500.

In 2015, Heritage Hills partnered with an organization in Honduras to construct a children’s home. They finished the home in June.

“A lot of the money will go to pay our house parents and the day-in and day-out expenses to run our children’s home in Honduras,” Holcomb said. “We received our first placement at the home. He’s only five days old. We will start caring for him and pay for all of his expenses.”

They also plan on creating comfort packs for kids in foster care homes.

The bags will be packed with items such as toothpaste, pajamas, diapers and wipes.

“Some foster parents don’t have these items,” Holcomb said.

The contest helped bring recognition to Heritage Hills.

“I think the whole process of us being involved with this contest and them picking us has really brought attention to our community that we’re here. We’re serving the adoption families and foster care families. We’re available and we’ve gained a lot more support,” Holcomb said.

Holcomb and her husband Sammy were first led to orphan ministry through the adoption of their youngest son.

She said her passion is to serve those in need in Mississippi and around the world.

“I try to point people in the right direction by mentoring people who are interested in adoption and help them see what agencies they can get set up with to start the process,” said Holcomb. “We want to see the number of orphans in the world decrease. In order to accomplish this goal, we need people and communities to commit to this mission and actively promote orphan care.”

Photo submitted/Misty Holcomb of Heritage Hills spends time with a child in the orphan ministry.