DHR grants foster kids’ wishes

Published 10:00 pm Monday, November 9, 2009

Some of our most cherished childhood memories are made on Christmas morning. The Chilton County Department of Human Resources needs the community’s help to provide gifts for the 100 foster children in the county’s custody.

While the state provides for the essential living needs of foster children, and foster parents sacrifice time and resources, DHR relies on community volunteers to provide for special events, such as Christmas.

The agency is already at full throttle to make Christmas wishes a reality for children.

“We want to make Christmas as special and magical for our foster children as it is for children who will be able to spend the holiday with their own families,” said DHR Director Marilyn Colson.

Here’s how it works:

Social workers get a wish list from each foster child, and the lists are then matched with people in the community who sponsor each specific child.

Colson said she hopes people will view this project as a mission to “take care of our own.”

The Huntley family of Clanton is an example of one family who does this each year.

“This year we chose to donate art supplies to encourage foster families to have creative time with their kids,” Jennifer Huntley said.

Not only can people sponsor specific children; they may also make a financial donation toward the project or provide gift cards to popular stores.

“Gift cards are especially good for teens,” Colson said. “There are 41 teenagers in foster care.”

To sponsor a child, call 280-2000 or e-mail Chilton County DHR at marilyn.colson@dhr.alabama.gov. Donations may be mailed to P.O. Box 1699, Clanton, AL 35046 or brought by the office on Airport Road next to the National Guard Armory.