For the seventh year in a row, Christmas Hope for the Holidays is bringing people in the spirit of giving and helping one another. Christmas Hope for the Holidays will hold its annual toy distribution beginning Dec. 21-23 from 8 a.m. to 5 p.m at the Rockdale Government Annex on 1400 Parker Road. This community-wide collaborative event offers gifts to families in need in the Rockdale community through the distribution of toys by volunteers.
Christmas Hope for the Holidays was started by three pastors. Michael Hutcheson, Allen Mays, and Tim Hogg were doing similar outreaches and requested help when they didn’t have the manpower to continue. Through DFCS (Department of Children and Family Services) they were partnered with the Rockdale Coalition for Children and Families, which is now headed by Hutcheson, and have continued to spread Christmas Hope ever since. All three pastors still participate in the event to some capacity.
When asked what inspired Hutcheson to continue coordinating the event each year, he replied, “We often see families who come in with downtrodden countenance due to difficult circumstances in their lives, and through our partnership with the faith community we have volunteers to pray with them. We see them leave with a lighter countenance and know that not only do we provide assistance with toys, but we also give them a sense of hope to know there are people that care about them.”
While the deadline to volunteer has passed, there are still a few volunteer spaces available. Other opportunities to give back include donating new unwrapped clothes or toys for children 0-12 and gift cards for teens through age 17. Items can be dropped off at the Rockdale Government Annex at 1400 Parker Road on Dec. 20 from 9 a.m. to 4 p.m. For more information on volunteering, gifts, or drop off locations, you may email Michael Hutcheson at firstname.lastname@example.org or call (770) 761-9244.