|Party included Santa Claus and Raise the Barre dancers|
Photo by Stacey Hairston:
Dancers from Raise the Barre Dance Studio entertained party-goers at the 23rd annual We Care Christmas party for children at the Moose Lodge in Rocky Mount Friday night.
Wednesday, December 25, 2013
By STACEY HAIRSTON - Staff Writer
Toy collections were a little low this year for the 23rd annual We Care Christmas program, according to Teresa Tyree, a 22-year volunteer.
"We lost a week in November," said Tyree, who believes that is the cause for the low collection number.
"We did get a lot of cash donations for shopping, so we made it happen."
Friday night's We Care party for children had a large turnout, however, with a visit from Santa and the addition of Raise the Barre Dance Studio performances.
"Those dancers did an awesome job," said Tyree.
We Care is helping around 1,460 children this year from over 325 families.
Area businesses, including the Willard Companies, Arrington Enterprises, YMCA, Dollar General, Walgreens and the Smith Mountain Lake Chamber of Commerce, helped the organization provide toys to children in need this Christmas season.
William Richardson also camped out at Smith Mountain Building Supply for several days to raise money and collect toys for the cause, added Tyree.
"There are so many people and organizations that have helped, I couldn't possibly name them all," she said.
Approved parents were allowed to shop for their children at the Moose Lodge last Wednesday, Thursday and Friday.
"We Care is not just a Christmas thing. It's an all-year thing. We collect donations all year to help people with electric bills, terminally ill children, hospital bills, lodging for families who need to be out of town with sick children, burial and funeral costs and more," Tyree said.
She credits the community for We Care's success throughout the years.
"Twenty-three years is a long time for an organization," said Tyree. "That says a lot about the Franklin County community. We are like a big family. Everyone helps each other out. As volunteers, we can't do anything without the community backing and support."
Tyree also thanked the Moose Lodge.
"Without them, we'd have nowhere to go," Tyree said. "We would have no place to hold the annual store and no place to hold the annual party."
Those wishing to donate to We Care throughout the year can do so by mailing a donation to P.O. Box 396, Rocky Mount, VA 24151.