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Christmas Friends needs wrappers, van and driver

Above, volunteers Mary Barnes of Wake and Middlesex Kiwanis Club member Ed Inabinet of Urbanna wrap gifts last Saturday for the Christmas Friends program. (Photo by Tom Hardin)

Christmas Friends Inc. still needs one more van with a driver to deliver gifts to the needy of Middlesex County on Saturday, December 15. Vans with stow-away seats or empty cargo vans are ideal.

Also needed are two more delivery assistants/navigators to assist the drivers.

A gift-wrapping session will be held this Saturday, December 8, starting at 1 p.m. at the Southside Sentinel. Three or four gift wrappers are needed.

If you can spare some time to help the less fortunate, please call Geanie Longest at the Sentinel at 758-2328.

Christmas Friends Inc. is in its 27th year helping the less fortunate of Middlesex County. Monetary donations are needed for the program that will serve over 300 clients this year.

Since its creation in 1986, a key ingredient to the success of Christmas Friends has been its partnership with the Middlesex County Department of Social Services, which screens all applicants for eligibility.

Once applicants are approved, the gift-giving program begins a process that’s almost like a pre-Christmas visit with Santa. Eligible families submit a “wish list” of clothing (including sizes and colors desired), toys and other needs; a volunteer shopper is assigned and issued donated funds; and the purchased gifts are assembled at the Southside Sentinel office in Urbanna for wrapping and delivery.

Funds needed
The fund-raising goal for Christmas Friends this remains at $26,000. Last year the community responded generously and donated $26,540.

As of December 4, 2012, donations total $9,681.

In 2011, Christmas Friends helped 325 residents (214 children and 111 senior adults) of Middlesex County, said Christmas Friends secretary and shopping director Bettie Lee Gaskins. Over $30,000 was spent on the gifts.

Gift boxes are always needed and delivery vans and drivers will soon be assigned. If you have a van and are willing to remove its back seats and be the driver for one of 10 delivery teams on Saturday, December 15, please call 758-2328. Gift boxes can be left at the Sentinel back door.

Christmas Friends is a 501(c)(3) organization. Tax-deductible donations may be made payable to Christmas Friends Inc., c/o Southside Sentinel, P.O. Box 549, Urbanna, VA 23175.

Contributors will be recognized as Christmas Friends and their donations will be listed in the Sentinel. Contributors who wish to remain anonymous should request that their donations be listed as such. Memorial contributions will also be acknowledged. Recent contributions include:

In memory of Ken Moore by JoAnne Moore, $100.
Anonymous, $500.
To the glory of God and in honor of our grandchildren, Andrew, Austen Taylor, Olivia, Brian and Aiden by Mamaw and Paw Paw, $200.
Women’s Community Club, Deltaville, $200.
Anonymous, $100.
In honor of First Lady Michelle Obama from Carol and Jay McNamara, $200.
Middlesex Kiwanis Foundation, $750.
Susan M. Sullivan, $100.
In memory of Joe Coker, Tim and Eleanor Jones, and Megan Hope Gandee by Gwen, Joey and Timmy Coker, $100.
Phil and Joy Crowder, $100.
In memory of Ruby, RW and Johnny by Jim Monroe, $100.
In memory of “Chuck” Revere, love your family ($100); In memory of Elizabeth and H.L. Revere given by family ($100), $200.
In memory of Wilbur and Clara Wilson, Marvin and Lillian Dunlevy, sisters Libby Gilbert and Nellie Ward, Butch by John and Martha Dunlevy, $150.
Anonymous, $51.
Jan and Dean Winston, $100.
L.C. and Janice Taylor, $100.
Memory of past PSW&F members, $50.
Frances Miller, $25.
Russ and Pat Russell, $100.
John G. Clay Jr., $100.
Trinity Lutheran Church, $750.
Unitarian Universalist Fellowship of Rappahannock, $200.
Urbanna Baptist Church Harmony Sunday School Class, $205.
Adult Sunday School Class of Saluda Baptist Church, $50.
Mike and Cathy Cottrell, $200.
In memory of William T. and Louise H. Miller and Lynn Faulkner by Elaine M. (Tommie) Faulkner-Peake and Joan M. Hines and families, $100.
Billy and Barbara Earman, $50.

Total this week: $4,881.
Total to date: $9,681.

posted 12.05.2012

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