Women’s Missionary Union hosts Christmas store

Published 10:35 am Thursday, December 21, 2017

The Alabama-Crenshaw Women’s Missionary Union, representing a coalition of Crenshaw County Baptist Churches, treated Luverne Health and Rehabilitation residents to the annual in-house “Christmas store” on Dec. 14.

Donations, including a varied selection of clothes, jewelry, books and games, were set up in a style designed to emulate a “shopping experience,” giving residents the chance to Christmas shop.

WMU member and organizer Jewell Killough explained.

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“We give residents tickets to use when they first come through to pick stuff out, then at the end they can come back through and get back whatever they want,” Killough said.

“We see to it that everybody gets something.”

The event is very popular among residents, evidenced by the long line winding out of the dining hall for the duration of the event.

The donations are the result of a joint collection effort of Crenshaw County Baptist churches. Volunteers man the donation table, the snack table, and stay alert to help residents when needed.

“We serve refreshments and help them shop,” said Killough.

Many residents use the shop as an opportunity to get Christmas gifts for grandkids and friends, searching through the abundant crossword puzzles, throw blankets, and jewelry to find that perfect gift. “I helped one lady find three necklaces for her three grandchildren,” remembered Killough, “lots of people shop for their family.”

Necessities such as lotions, Kleenex, and underwear were available for those looking to replenish their own supplies. The snack table, replete with finger foods such as cheese balls and cookies, helped residents to quell their hunger while shopping.

Luverne Health and Rehab Activities Director LaWanda Harrell praised the Christmas store and the excitement it generates among residents, saying “there’s always a line all the way down the hall, [people] just waiting to shop and come socialize.”

Residents who are bed-ridden or otherwise incapacitated participated alongside the able, pushed by nurses through the line and browsing the donations from their wheelchairs or beds.

Information on further charitable activities by the WMU can be found on their Facebook page, listed under Alabama-Crenshaw Baptist WMU.