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By Chris Gregory, Managing Editor

(EDITOR’S NOTE: Author is a member of the Rotary Club and serves on the committee which helps oversee Christmas For Kids)

An annual Hartsville tradition was carried on last week as Trousdale County Christmas For Kids distributed clothes and toys to over 170 local children.

Members of the Hartsville Rotary Club and other community volunteers gathered at the Hartsville Church of Christ’s fellowship hall on Wednesday to hand out gifts.

Christmas For Kids was founded in the 1980s by Regina White, who ran the program until stepping down in 2016. A committee of Rotary Club members now helps coordinate the program in conjunction with the Community Help Center.

Chris Gregory / Hartsville Vidette
Members of the Hartsville Rotary Club and community volunteers pose before beginning last week’s distribution as part of the Christmas For Kids program.

“We want to thank the Hartsville Church of Christ for allowing us to use its facility to help bring a Merry Christmas to children in Trousdale County,” the Rotary committee said in a statement.

“We also cannot express enough thanks to the volunteers who came to assist with shopping, bagging items and distributing to those who need some help this time of year. It’s our privilege to be able to serve our community in this manner.

“Christmas For Kids could not exist with the generous financial support it receives from all of Trousdale County, from individuals, civic groups, businesses, churches and more. We give our heartfelt thanks to all those who help make this program a success each year.”

Each child received a new coat, shirt, pants and shoes, and then was able to choose from toys available. Some toys were purchased, but many were donated through the Trousdale County Rescue Squad’s annual toy drive, which was held after the Hartsville Christmas Parade on Dec. 9.

“The Sheriff’s Department and Rescue Squad have been longtime supporters of Christmas For Kids, both in raising funds via the annual cakewalk and collecting toys through the annual toy drive,” the Rotary committee said. “Their support goes a long way toward making Christmas For Kids successful and is greatly appreciated.”

Reach Chris Gregory at 615-374-3556 or cgregory@hartsvillevidette.com.