The deadline for applications to be submitted was 5 p.m., Wednesday. Harding said Christmas for All officials will meet on Friday to sort who is left on the list and will do some “targeted buying” on Monday. By then, they should what specific needs remain for toys and other items to be purchased and distributed.
Wilson County Christmas for All partners with the Angel Tree program in Watertown and the West Wilson Big Brothers in Mt. Juliet each year to see that children whose names are submitted to them have a merrier Christmas than they might otherwise have. They work together and share names so that duplication does not occur.
Harding said Watertown Angel Tree workers will be shopping on Monday and Tuesday. Donations are up for the program, but he said the Angel Tree effort could still use additional funds.
“Monetary would be best,” he said, because at this point program personnel know more about the specific needs of those on their lists.
Big Brothers in Mt. Juliet will pick up donated food and toys today and will begin packing them at 5:30 p.m. this evening at Mt. Juliet Middle School. The Mother’s Toy Store will open at the same location from 1 until 4 p.m., Saturday.
If you can volunteer for any of these events, show up at the Kroger parking lot on Mt. Juliet Road at Highway 70 at 7:30 a.m., Friday, to help collect toys and food from schools and businesses, or at MJMS later to help pack or to work at the Mother’s Toy Store. Visit www.bigbrothersofmtjuliet.org for more information.
Harding said Wilson County Christmas for All should receive additional funds from the Cedar City Christmas Celebration and the Wilson County Sportsmen’s Club which will make donations to the organization.
Christmas for All will continue to accept donations through Christmas and each year works to have additional items to roll over into next year’s effort.
Harding said they also try to have additional toys and other items on hand to help in case of an emergency such as someone’s house burning down or some other catastrophic event.
“I don’t want to preach gloom and doom,” he said, “but there is some ongoing need. Donations are welcome anytime.”
Harding said he wanted to publicly praise and thank all of the volunteers who are working with Christmas for All this year. He noted that a family came by on Wednesday to pick up their box of toys and the family’s mom related to volunteers some of the things they have faced this year and thanked them, also, for helping her family have a merry Christmas.
It is easy to get tired from lifting, packing and doing other activities at Christmas for All, he said, but words like those from the mom mean much to the volunteers and helps lift their spirits, as well.
Harding noted that Christmas for All officials have met a few times with representatives of the Marines Toys for Tots Program and are looking at working more with that organization next year.
“I’m the eternal optimist,” he said, adding this is a good community that has always come through for children in need.
If you can help, either through a monetary or toy donation, you can visit the site at the Turner Evans Building at the James E. Ward Agricultural Center in Lebanon. The mailing address is P.O. Box 922, Lebanon, TN 37088. The phone number is 547-1106. Wilson County Christmas for All is a 501(c) 3 charitable organization.
Editor Jennifer Horton may be contacted at firstname.lastname@example.org.