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Community: Kiwanis Club of Christiansburg provides Christmas for 51 children

Community: Kiwanis Club of Christiansburg provides Christmas for 51 children

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As has been the tradition for more than 40 years, on Dec. 17 the Kiwanis Club of Christiansburg held its annual children’s Christmas event. But due to COVID-19 it was a lot different from prior years.

This year, rather than having the children gather for a pizza party and Santa delivering their gifts, their parents or guardians drove up to a designated area in the Christiansburg Recreation Center’s parking lot where Kiwanis members handed them a bag of toys, a bag of clothing and a box of food for each child. For those unable to come pick up their gifts, the club arranged for the presents to be delivered.

The process began with the local schools providing the Kiwanis Club the names of children in need. They also obtained and provided the club a list of the clothing needed and the toys desired. Once the names were received, each Kiwanian took a name and bought clothes for the child they selected. Items of clothing purchased included coats, sweaters, shoes, boots, socks, pants, shirts, underwear and other items requested. On average, each club member spent in excess of $100 per child for clothing.

On the Saturday before the event, a group of Kiwanis members went on a club-funded 7 a.m. shopping spree at Walmart and purchased toys for the children. Afterward, the toys were taken to Belmont Christian Church where they were wrapped and bagged by the church youth group. Once wrapped, the toys were delivered to the Christiansburg Recreation Center for distribution to their parents as they drove through the parking lot.

Between the members buying clothes and the club providing toys and food, more than $10,000 was spent on the Christmas program this year. Even though all of the major fundraisers of 2020 were canceled due to the pandemic, the club, through donations and some savings from the prior year, was able to fund this long-running event.

A big thank you is in order for Walmart and its employees, B&B Storage (Bryan Rice), Belmont Christian Church and its youth group, the Christiansburg Recreation Center and all the Kiwanis members who helped make this event a success.

Special thanks to Dennis Hunter who chaired the event for the Kiwanis Club and the Kiwanis members who did all the work.

Submitted by Ernie Wade

Submitted by Ernie Wade

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