Pocahontas County FRN Needs Angel Tree Presents by Tuesday 12-13-22

Stacy Vandevender of the Pocahontas County Family Resource Network (FRN) sat down with us to explain about the FRN’s Project Christmas Program, and the urgent need for people who have selected “angels” from the Angel Tree in the FRN Office in Marlinton to return their presents to the FRN Office be3fore December 13th.

Stacy, can you explain this Angel Tree program to our listeners?

“We have a here at the FRN that we call Project Christmas,” said Vandevender. “It started well over 10 years ago. We serve low-income families with children 12 and under (in age.) We provide warm clothing, basic necessities and toys for Christmas for families that otherwise couldn’t afford it.”

“This year we have 191 angles on our tree, we still need about 45 of them to be adopted. Whenever you do adopt an angel, we list on there either boy or girl, their age, their sizes and what they need and what they like. The families who do adopt an angel, and shop for them, we are trying to get the toys back – everything back by December 13th. So, that gives us time to get the toys back to the families and to finish shopping for the families that did not get adopted.”

If someone has adopted an angel is there a minimum or maximum mount of money they should spend on their gifts to that child?

“No, it’s not really based on income. Every child is different. If you could only help with a couple of toys that’s fantastic. Just buy what you want to buy -if you want to buy a Barbie and drop it off here. We can use it. We can put it in someone’s bag that need it.”

Any gifts you buy should be new, not used. Is that correct?

“Correct, new unwrapped toys. You can bring them here. You can make a monetary donation and we can do the shopping. You can use out PayPal link or our Facebook page for more info.”

“There is lots of ways to help, it doesn’t have to be adopting an angel and buying all the items on their list. We fund raise throughout the year and we try and save that money and use it right now. So, all those donations our community gives us, it all goes back into Christmas for these kids.”

Should you wrap your gifts before bringing them in?

“No, leave them unwrapped. That kind of helps us see what they did get, what they still lack, what we can help with. We don’t wrap them; we leave them unwrapped so that when they do get to the family, they can participate. They stay up late and wrap presents and take part in that tradition that all of us parents have gone through, you know, staying up late the night before Christmas wrapping presents.”

Is there anything else people need to know?

“Well, we are trying to get all donations back here by the 13th of December. So, if you adopted an angel, we would like to see everything back in the office by the 13th. Apart from that, we are just really thankful for the ones who have adopted angels and taken part in the shopping process and helping Christmas come true for a family where otherwise probably wouldn’t.”

“We have families that just fell on hard times, and have come to us asking for help, saying they can’t afford even one wrapped present. And these are usually families who have more than one kid. Of course, it’s confidential, but afterwards we get pictures and thank-you letters in the mail. They’ll come in and show us pictures of their kids opening presents and unwrapping them and how happy they are. It’s really great to see that.”

“If you don’t want to adopt an angel, but you do want to help, call the office. Our phone number here is 799-6847. Ask for Becky Campbell. Sometimes we only need a couple of toys to finish off a bag for a family, or a pair of boots. If you call and can’t help a lot. That is a way you can still participate and help. It doesn’t have to be the entire list for this child just one item. A little bit goes a long way, and it is all appreciated.”

If you have committed by picking a child’s needs off the angel tree, remember the quicker you can bring the items you bought for that child back to the FRN helps them determine if the child has other needs which the FRN can also provide, but the deadline for bringing them in is this coming Tuesday, December 13th.

Story By

Tim Walker

Tim is the WVMR News Reporter. Tim is a native of Maryland who started coming to Pocahontas County in the 1970’s as a caver. He bought land on Droop Mountain off Jacox Road in 1976 and built a small house there in the early 80’s. While still working in Maryland, Tim spent much time at his place which is located on the Friars Hole Cave Preserve. Retiring in 2011 as a Lieutenant with the Anne Arundel County Police Department in Maryland, Tim finally took the plunge and moved from Maryland to his real home on Droop Mountain. He began working as the Pocahontas County Reporter for Allegheny Mountain Radio in January of 2015.

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