That title, “Community”, is what our organization is all about. We are folks from all walks of life coming together to make sure the ALL children in our community have a safe place to live, with water and electricity, clothes and shoes that fit, and a few fun items to experience God’s amazing love at Christmas, all of which is another way of saying “fulfilling God’s desire for all children.”
This has been our organization’s focus for the past 26+ years. We are local folks helping local folks, all volunteers, and every donation goes to helping children right here in Oglethorpe County. We partner with our local school system, Family Connection, the Recreation Department, The Department of Family and Children’s Services, Sheriff’s Department, local churches, other charities, businesses, clubs, and individuals. We are members of Charity Tracker, which unites charities in the Athens area to ensure the assistance we provide is given appropriately. We listen carefully to our partner organizations, donors, and recipients, and have been able to tailor our assistance in ways that are most beneficial and effective.
The consensus now is that helping families keep the power on and stay in their homes is most important and needed. This assistance helps free up money for other pressing needs. Applicants for assistance receive a check or online payment made payable for a qualifying bill. In addition to this, parents have been excited to be able to choose fun items for Christmas for their children from the wonderful gifts we get though our toy drives, which we coordinate through Toys for Tots. Plus, this year we can once again offer our “free yard sale” with clean, gently used clothing, books, toys, and other items for families with extras to share with those who are lacking. Something new this year is we are working with The Athens Area Diaper Bank to facilitate their allocation of diapers for our county to help keep our youngest ones clean and comfy. In addition to keeping this whole train running and coordinating with everyone, our Co-chair Shirley Dillard (706-540-0785) manages storage space for used furniture, appliances, and other household goods to help families. (Yes, she’s amazing!!!)
Your help is needed and greatly appreciated. If you are able to give financially, know that any amount you can donate will help. Donations of toys and items for teens are also welcomed through Toys for Tots and at our drop off locations. And, we need volunteers to make it all happen. Please click on the “calendar” and “donate” buttons for more information.
Catherine Bowen Drewry
Co- chair, Community Christmas of Oglethorpe County, Incorporated