UPDATE: The latest tally is that 262 kids will be getting Christmas presents from the Children’s Center. That’s 86 more kids than last year or a 48% increase. We have also extended the deadline for gifts to arrive to Friday, Dec 15.
The Children’s Center’s annual Christmas Drive has already grown by 22% this year. Last year, the Children’s Center gave presents of clothing, coats, shoes, toys and other gifts to 176 children and youth who were being served by the Children’s Center’s two primary programs: CASA and the Children’s Advocacy Center. This year the Children’s Center already knows of 216 children they will be helping.
“We know this number will continue to grow before we are done,” said Sandy Barber, Executive Director of the Children’s Center. “As new cases come in and as staff continue to make contact families already on our caseload, we will know of even more children in need.”
Some of the children helped by this project are living in foster homes, away from family and friends. Other children have gone to live with grandparents or other relatives as a result of abuse or neglect. Many of these families struggle financially when one or more children suddenly come to live with them. In other families, the discovery of sexual abuse in the home has meant the loss of family income when the offender leaves.
Center staff and volunteers take the time to find out about the individual situation, needs, preferences and wishes of each child. The agency also works closely with Child Protective Services and other community agencies to ensure that efforts are coordinated and not duplicated.
Donations of cash, toys, new clothes, coats, shoes and other items are now being accepted. Teddy bear trees, which contain the wish or need of a specific child, are up at the Tax-Assessor Collector’s Office, First National Bank of Trenton (Bonham and Trenton branches), WalMart, Legend Bank, Blessings and Butterflies, Tractor Supply, Cato’s and Warrior Tire. For donors who are short on time, the center also accepts cash donations which will be used to purchase gifts for the children.
Donations can be brought or mailed to the center at 112 West Fifth Street, Bonham, Texas 75418. The center is open 8 am to 5 pm, Monday – Friday. Organizers ask that the donations arrive by Dec 11, or earlier if possible. This will allow time for gifts to be sorted, wrapped and delivered or picked up in time for the holidays. Checks should be made out to FCCC and indicate they are for Christmas. Donations can also be made by credit or debit card on the center’s website. All donations are tax deductible to the extent allowable by law. For more information, call 903-583-4339 or visit www.fanninccc.org.