The impact of a donation to the Community Christmas Card is felt year-round by young Faulkner County residents, who for whatever reason have found themselves wanting.
Students from Kindergarten to high school come from all walks of life, with circumstances that vary. Some have plenty while others are without.
The Community Christmas Card fundraiser ensures that a student who is unable to find shoes, glasses, or pay for a doctor or dentist appointment can do so when the time comes.
A participant’s donation of $1 or more buys a spot for their name or a name of their choosing to be printed in the Log Cabin Democrat’s Dec. 25, Christmas Day edition.
Each year a special section containing the Christmas card is added to the newspaper in honor of every young student in need.
"The Log Cabin Democrat has been organizing this Christmas card from the community for the last 10 years and each year we hear amazing stories of how small donations have changed children’s lives," said Rhonda Overbey, advertising and marketing director. "Because we’re able to give this money directly to the school counselors to use where they see the most immediate needs, from eyeglasses to winter coats and gloves, lives are changed overnight."
Counselors who are entrusted with an equal share of the funds, are often alerted to a student’s need by school staff, including teachers, administrators or the school’s nurse.
In years past, Conway High School-West’s Cheryl Bramlett, RN, has seen the fund used to send a student to the dentist and to buy shoes.
Though students in high school don’t need a toy at Christmas, the winter season finds some without warm shoes, she said.
Bramlett said that it was hard to believe that a student could essentially be shoeless, but that it was a reality at the school.
The fund has been used to turn lights back on at a student’s house, and at the elementary level, has purchased a new pair of glasses when the old ones were broken on the playground.
The fundraiser is unique in that 100 percent of each donation is forwarded to students. The Log Cabin Democrat organizes and facilitates the fundraiser, and students benefit wholly from each donation.
"Faulkner County has always been a giving community but at Christmastime, needs are compounded. The Log Cabin Democrat is proud to be able to give 100 percent of the money donated to the Community Christmas Card directly to our local schools and recognize individuals and families who contribute to the donation by printing their name in the Log Cabin Democrat," said Overbey.
To make a donation, bring it by the Log Cabin office at 1058 Front St. To donate by mail, send donations to Community Christmas Card, P.O. Box 969, Conway, AR 72033. Donations may also be made online through PayPal at www.thecabin.net.