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Gathering shows holiday spirit

Lashia Lowe and Angela Holman, siblings of children who participate in the Children’s Rehabilitation Service, tell Santa what they want for Christmas Saturday during the annual gathering at the West Central Alabama Easter Seal Rehabilitation Center. -- Robert Hudson

By Robert Hudson

The Selma Times-Journal

 

In the spirit of the Christmas season, the Children’s Rehabilitation Service provided the gift of giving to its clients.

The Children’s Rehabilitation Service held its annual Christmas gathering Saturday at the West Central Alabama Easter Seal Rehabilitation Center to give gifts to its clients and their families.

Melvina Moss, office coordinator and rehab nurse coordinator at Children’s Rehabilitation, said the gathering is put on to provide a merry Christmas for the children the center serves.

“We provide services for children with special health care needs,” Moss said. “We usually hold this Christmas gathering on an annual basis. This is something we’ve been doing for about seven to eight years or longer. We thought it would be nice to give back to our clients to make sure that they do have a happy Christmas, and we also do it for the staff because we enjoy doing this very much.”

Santa Claus was in attendance, as children were able to take pictures with Santa after receiving their gifts.

A short program was provided prior to Santa’s arrival, including a reading by Larry Morris of ‘T’was the Night Before Christmas’.

Educational information was also provided for the clients and their families, including safety tips from the Selma Fire Department.

Odessa Taylor, who coordinates the gathering and is a parent consultant with the Children’s Rehabilitation Service, said they also give back to the parents.

“We also, with the staff here, buy stuff for door prizes, and the parents pull for door prizes,” Taylor said. “It’s just a matter of this agency giving back with what we have.”

Taylor said organizations such as Wal-Mart and Toys for Tots donated to the gathering, which is needed because the state doesn’t officially hold a gathering such as this one.

“This is our way of giving back because the state doesn’t officially do anything like this, so we have to organize and find ways to get snacks and food and toys, and we always try to make sure we have enough,” Taylor said. “Today, we probably had close to 200 people in the building, so that means that we try to get toys, not only for our clients here, but we also feel if we’re giving to the clients, we need to give to their siblings as well.”

 
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