The Giving Season
by Mindy East
The old saying that “it takes a village” still stands true, especially when it comes to helping children and their families at Christmas.
For the past six years the Humboldt City Schools gives the opportunity for local businesses and individuals to adopt a family for Christmas. Whether it is with monetary donations or actually buying the gifts for the designated families.
The generous donors are given age, gender and sizes for the children in need. Then these items are dropped off at the school for the parents of the children to pick up. The families are selected by the Families Resource Program at the school.
Approximately 72 children received clothes, shoes, hygiene products and toys from those donors. The number of children also included those that participated in the “Shop with a Cop” event this year.
“We at East Elementary School are so fortunate to have the community support of area business, churches and individuals willing to provide Christmas for our families of HCS,” said Principal Brittanie Doaks.
One of the biggest supporters for this event is Dana’s Place in Humboldt. Owner, Dana Grimes and his wonderful staff hold a bike ride in October, but it’s not just a bike ride, it is also a silent auction and BBQ fundraiser. All funds are collected for the Humboldt city students, Head Start of Humboldt and the Tennessee State Veterans Home.
James Kilburn handles the bike run and helps Grimes with getting businesses in Humboldt and surrounding area to donate items for the auction.
“This has been a great success because of the donations of the auction items and the city was a huge help,” said Grimes. “We thank them for all they did.”
Cindy Doss coordinates the shopping for the families. Doss and the other women from Dana’s Place go shopping and truly enjoy doing this all the way down to individually wrapping all the gifts.
Mike and Tine Gray cook the Boston butts and bologna to sell during the bike ride and auction.
“It takes everybody to make this a success and every little bit helps,” said Grimes.
Wednesday morning, Dana’s Place crew loaded up their vehicle and delivered presents for 25 children to East Elementary School. Doss stayed behind to organize the presents so it was a quick in and out for the families that would soon arrive to pick them up.
Recently, Dana’s Place donated five $100 gift cards to the Tennessee State Veterans Home for them to do online shopping for the residents, either for themselves or their families.
Then on Thursday morning, Grimes, Kilburn and Doss all drove to extend the generosity a little further to Humboldt Head Start with a $1,000 check. Upon entering, Andrea Tucker greeted them with “thank you” and an eye squinting smile behind her mask.
These funds are used to help purchase things for the children and students that attend.
“I know this means the world to all the children that get to receive this holiday season,” said Kilburn. “I really wish we could do it for all those in need.”
It truly does take a village. If you feel the need to help a family in need next holiday season please, for Shop with a Cop contact the school or the Humboldt Police Department or contact Dana Grimes to participate in the bike ride, donate auction items or simply donate money. All will be glad to help you in anyway.