McCormick County programs help at-risk youth


MCCORMICK, S.C. (WJBF)– South Carolina’s Heritage Center is where history and art collide. People of all ages come to McCormick to experience the facility. The center holds classes that engage at-risk youth.

“One time you were a child, and someone took the time to pour something into you that you remembered. You saw something that motivated you to be more than you were, and if we don’t do it, it won’t be done,”

Teresa Kemp, owner of South Carolina’s Wild’s Heritage Center, said.

Kemp implements her passions to to enrich lives in McCormick– empowering youth and sharing cultural history.

“We have the artifacts here to show unique sewing methods, wood and heritage and cultural art done by the community wholly, so it shows them a totally different story,” Kemp said.

Kemp and Charlotte Tallent, the McCormick County Chamber of Commerce Director work hand-in-hand to pave a better future for their community’s young people.

“The majority of McCormick hasn’t gone to college, so we need to come, educate, create programs, and teach our youth– that people say are “at risk”– to create programs,” Kemp said.

“She teaches them how to be entrepreneurs. It could be through soap making, through candle making, but it also (something recent she’s been doing) she teaches them how to do research and how to write their own book– how to tell their own story,” Tallent explained.

Kemp wrote a book of her own about her family’s heritage, but she doesn’t stop there. She encourages kids to do the same. Her goal is to get 100 books written by McCormick students. So far, 12 are being written, and one has recently been published.

“There’s nobody here that could show them, tell them and prove it to them, whether they’re black or white that they could do anything that they wanted,” Kemp said.

For more information on South Carolina Wild’s Heritage Center, visit

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