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Christmas Friends fund totals $12,570

Christmas Friends Inc., now in its 33rd year helping the less fortunate of Middlesex County, needs funds. Last year, Christmas Friends spent $30,410 on gifts for 299 people. Send your donation to Christmas Friends, ℅ Southside Sentinel, P.O. Box 549, Urbanna, VA 23175 or bring to the Sentinel at 276 Virginia St., Urbanna, VA.

The fund-raising goal for Christmas Friends this year is $28,000, and donations so far total $12,570.10 as of December 4.

All funds donated to Christmas Friends go directly to help needy children and the disabled or low-income elderly of Middlesex. All workers are volunteers and there are no administrative fees. 

The community-based program, administered by the Southside Sentinel, brings together those who want to make Christmas brighter for hundreds of local needy children, and elderly or disabled adults.

Santa’s helpers are working furiously to fulfill the wish lists. Gifts this year will be delivered on Saturday, December 15.

Big vehicles needed
On December 15 several vehicles will be needed for gift delivery. The ideal van for holding approximately 25 large bags of gifts is a Chrysler or Dodge with stowaway rear seats or similar size vans with seats that can be completely removed.

“Full size” SUVs (such as a Chevy Suburban) have also been used successfully. Most regular-size SUVs do not have enough space for all the bags.

Full size pick-up trucks with camper shells will also work well. If you have an enclosed pick-up truck or a van, are willing to remove its back seats and be the driver for one of 12 delivery teams on Saturday, December 15, please call 758-2328.

Shopping and wrapping
More than 100 volunteer shoppers have begun fulfilling the wish lists for recipients.

Gift wrapping volunteers may be needed on Sunday, December 9, from 1-5 p.m. To volunteer to wrap presents or deliver, please call Geanie Longest at the Southside Sentinel at 758-2328, ext. 101, or email her at

Since its creation in 1986, a key to the success of Christmas Friends has been its partnership with the Middlesex County Department of Social Services, which carefully screens all applicants for eligibility. Applicants must meet strict income guidelines.

In 2017, the community donated $34,467 to Christmas Friends, which helped 229 children and 70 elderly or disabled adults, said Christmas Friends secretary and shopping director Bettie Lee Gaskins.

Gift boxes are always needed and can be left at any time at the back door of the Sentinel office.

For more information, call Geanie Longest (758-2328) at the Southside Sentinel. 

Supplies such as boxes, wrapping paper and delivery bags are all donated. Volunteers supply storage space, vans and fuel to assist with the big delivery job.

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 also will be acknowledged.

Donations this week total $7,413.50 bringing the total amount received through December 4 to $12,570.10. Recent donations include:

Roger and Mandy on Victory Lane, $50.
In memory of Uvonne Warner, $500.
Clyde and Gayle Stewart, $100.
In memory of Charles Revere and loved ones given by family, $200.
Steven and Rebecca Ferrell, $250.
In memory of Bill, Kate, Jimmy, Archer, Buddy, Buck, JJ, Bobby and Jack, $300.
Bob and Kris Scherrer, $300.
In memory of William H. Milby, Louise M. Milby and Arthur J. Shaver by the Milby family, $200.
Greg and Gayle Chambers, $250.
In memory of Charles Healy by Anita Healy, $125.
Anonymous, $500.
In memory of J.M. ‘Buddy’ Moore by Jackie and family, $200.
With love to and in honor of the Town of Urbanna by Mary and Chip Buxton, $200.
Dave and Susan Prugh, $100.
In memory of Ken by Joanne, $150.
In honor of our 5 grandchildren by The Richwines, $100.
From Dick and Kathy Goyne in memory of Kathy’s mother Jane Wray Bristow McDorman, $100.
The Orlando Family, $150.
Anonymous, $100.
In memory of Margaret and Garland Lively by Su and David Lively, $100.
In memory of Walt Hurley and Marvin Mason from “an old friend,” $100.
Scott and Melissa Brannan, $250.
Anonymous, $125.
Gordon and Jane Cutler, $100.
In honor of Frances Ward, Urbanna, $50.
In memory of Walt and Ruth Ellen Hurley by parents, $500.
In memory of Ada Marie Hall by Lewis and Cerise Hall, $250.
Kitty Kat Nappers Red Hat Group, $75.
In loving memory of Jim Kennon by Betty K., $100.
Emory and Karen Minter, $100.
Leasure’s Wrecker Service Inc., $100.
Anonymous, $100.
Middlesex Kiwanis Foundation, $750.
Middlesex County Woman’s Club, $150.
Harmony Sunday School Class of Urbanna Baptist Church, $250.
In honor of Spirit of Love Sunday School Class teachers at Harmony Grove Baptist Church, $100.
GE Foundation, $250.
Middle Peninsula Security Center, $88.50.

Previous total: $5,156.60
Total this week: $7,413.50
Total to date: $12,570.10

posted 12.07.2018

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