By Sarrah Peters, News Editor
On Tuesday, December 20, eight volunteers gathered to wrap presents for the children at The Love Center shelter in Gadsden.
At the beginning of December, volunteer Tiffany Clayton posted on social media searching for people to adopt the Love Center’s children for Christmas.
“We had a huge response,” said Love Center board member Diane Smith.
About 25 people came forward to donate to the children’s Christmas. The chidren received shoes, clothes, toys, hygeine supplies, books, bicycles and more.
After the children had been adopted, even more people came forward wanting to help, so the shelter received blankets, dishware and more. Alfa Insurance decided to buy the Love Center supplies in lieu of the office’s annual Dirty Santa game. Alfa also put together stockings for the children. Someone even came forward to donate a Christmas tree.
In total, The Love Center has been able to provide Christmas for 15 children from the age of 4 months to 15 years old. About half of these children are currently residing at The Love Center. The remainder are from families The Love Center volunteers recognized as in need this holiday season.
“I’ve been on the board 20 years,” said Love Center Board President Nancy Smith. “We’ve never had this much donated before.”
The Love Center was founded in 1982 when Charlsie Tarrance was inspired to provide shelter to “God’s most forgotten people.” Tarrance noticed the problem of homelessness in Etowah County and created The Love Center to provide clothing, food, furniture and shelter to those in need.
The Love Center was able to assist 144 clients in 2015. Thirty-five of those clients were children. That is 4,014 nights of shelter and 12,042 meals for its clients in the last year alone.