Here’s how to help out for holidays

Tue, 12/09/2008 - 4:41pm
By: John Munford

Presents under the tree — for many Fayette families that and a trip to church for the true meaning of Christmas is the culmination of their celebration.

But there are others here who are not as fortunate. Young children who ask not for toys, but for a winter coat and socks. A great-grandmother who is raising her great-grandchildren due to a fractured family. These are but a few of those in need during the holiday season.

A number of local agencies and volunteer efforts are aimed squarely at helping the most needy of local residents. They range in function from feeding the hungry and helping pay their bills, as the Fayette Samaritans do ... to the Fayette County Youth Protection Homes, which provides a loving environment to foster children whose parents have neglected or abused them.

One program needing assistance over the holidays is Promise Place, a non-profit that assists victims of domestic violence. They are seeking assistance in providing gifts and items to families they have provided services to during the year. Promise Place also operates a shelter in Fayette County for women fleeing their abusers. To help Promise Place, contact Vicky Farragut at 770-461-3839.

The Fayette County Department of Family and Children Services is also working to provide Christmas gifts for children in foster care. To volunteer, contact Sharon Herbert via email at

The Fayette Youth Protection Homes, which houses abused and neglected children who are in foster care, is in need of gently used clothes for its Gracie’s Closet initiative. The “closet” is actually designed as a store for all Fayette foster children to “shop” at for necessary clothing ... free of charge.

FYPH recently expanded its mission to help encourage more foster parents and to provide more assistance for foster families.

The store also needs other items for foster children including:

• New or gently used shoes and clothing (size infant through teen)

• Pajamas

• Socks and underwear (new)

• Winter jackets, mittens, and hats

• Diaper wipes and diapers

• Baby powder, lotion, diaper rash ointment, infant shampoo

• Baby gear ( diaper bags, infant carriers, baby swings, cribs, etc)

• Baby blankets, baby linens

• Baby bottles, sippy cups, bibs, pacifiers (new)

• Toiletries such as toothpaste, shampoo, deodorant, soap

• Haircare products

• Paper products such as paper towels, paper plates, napkins, garbage bags

• Cleaning products

• Books for babies, children and teens

• School supplies

• Canned goods, food items

• Gift cards to movies, restaurants, and clothing stores.

Items can be dropped off at the FYPH Executive Office at 101 Devant St, Suite 502, Fayetteville Mon.-Fri. from 9 a.m.–4 p.m. The office is located off Gingercake Road just north of its intersection with Ga. Highway 54, behind Waffle House. For info, call 770-461-7020.

The Fayette County Sheriff’s Office is still taking contributions for its “Shop with a Sheriff” program that pairs needy children with deputies who take them Christmas shopping for gifts and essentials. Donations are accepted at (PayPal and credit cards are accepted) or by sending a check to “Shop with a Sheriff” at 155 Johnson Avenue, Fayetteville, Ga. 30214.

Checks for that program may also be dropped off at Images by Rainy Photography, Sunbelt Graphic Systems, Big Daddy’s Cycle World, Partners Pizza in Peachtree City or Royal Learners in Peachtree City.

Some local businesses are also stepping up to the plate to serve as collection points for certain charities. Among them:

• The Fayette County Magistrate Court is accepting non-perishable food, diapers, personal care items and other necessities through Thursday, Dec. 18 at its location in the Fayette County Justice Center on Center Drive just off Jimmie Mayfield Boulevard in Fayetteville. The items will be donated to the Fayette Samaritans food bank. (See a wish list for the Samaritans on Page A3).

• Mobile Storage Depot in Peachtree City is offering a free month’s worth of storage for anyone who makes a minimum $20 contribution to the U.S. Marine Corps Toys for Tots Foundation;

• Bank of North Georgia branches and Peachtree City fire stations are collecting toys for the Marines Toys for Tots program.

Christian City in Union City, which also houses children who are victims of abuse, neglect and/or abandonment, is seeking help meeting its children’s wish lists. Email

Also in need of community help is Southwest Christian Care, which provides hospice care to terminally ill patients and respite care for families of children with special needs. For more information contact Karen Stephens at 770-969-8354 or

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