Luther Woods res­i­dents give to needy chil­dren

The Willow Grove Guide - - FRONT PAGE - By Caitlin Burns

cburns@jour­nalregis­ter.com Af­ter nearly a year of col­lect­ing money, res­i­dents at Luther Woods Nurs­ing and Re­ha­bil­i­ta­tion in Hat­boro can gave the gift of Christ­mas to chil­dren of all ages in the lo­cal com­mu­nity. Over sev­eral weeks, staff and res­i­dents pur­chased gifts for 15 chil­dren in the area us­ing money raised from cookie sales, fundraiser bas­kets, pret­zel sales and a craft fair. Since Fe­bru­ary the res­i­dents have col­lected about $3,000 through their sales.

“It’s to­tally amaz­ing,” di­rec­tor of ac­tiv­i­ties Randie Duretz said. “We need to help th­ese peo­ple here in our com­mu­nity.”

Duretz, along with sev­eral res­i­dents, wrapped up the last gifts for the chil­dren Dec. 17 with a spe­cial visit from grey­hounds Misty and Heart, who are this year’s res­i­dent mini rein­deer, and their own­ers Steve and Lynne Lieber­man. Misty and Heart make sev­eral vis­its dur­ing the year to Luther Woods, and DuUHWz VDLG WKH UHVLGHnWV VSHFL­fiFDOOy re­quested them for the event.

7KH 15 FKLOGUHn wKR wLOO EHnH­fiW IURP WKH IunGUDLVLnJ DUH SDUW RI fivH fam­i­lies in the area who were nom­i­nated by their lo­cal churches and hos­pi­tals. The youngest of the chil­dren is ex­pected to be born Dec. 31 and the old­est is 18 years old. Duretz said the ex­pec­tant mother had very lit­tle in prepa­ra­tion for her child and that res­i­dents were able to help her by do­nat­ing di­a­pers, clothes and other in­fant ne­ces­si­ties.

“There’s al­ways chil­dren that need your help,” res­i­dent Lil­lian Kastle said. She had as­sisted in wrap­ping the gifts since Dec. 10 and said she was more than happy to help. “We al­ways re­mem­ber oth­ers. Giv­ing is life.”

Duretz said one fam­ily had al­ready re­ceived the presents but the oth­ers would be dis­trib­uted through­out the wHHN VR DOO fivH IDPLOLHV KDG WKHLU gifts be­fore Christ­mas Eve. Ad­min­is­tra­tive ser­vice di­rec­tor Kathy Gray said this is just one ser­vice project the res­i­dents have done over the last year. Oth­ers in­clude do­na­tions to Hur­ri­cane Sandy vic­tims, can­cer re­search do­na­tions and drives for lo­cal food pantries and women’s shel­ters.

“We con­stantly give back to the com­mu­nity,” Gray said.

This is the sec­ond year Luther Woods has adopted lo­cal fam­i­lies, Duretz said, although last year it only raised enough money to pro­vide for a fam­ily of eight. For next year, she said, res­i­dents are ask­ing to start as soon as the new year be­gins in hopes of be­ing able to help 20 chil­dren.

Luther Woods res­i­dent Dot Lloyd helps wrap gifts to be do­nated to five lo­cal fam­i­lies Dec. 17.

Luther Woods res­i­dent Lil­lian Kastle helps wrap gifts to be do­nated to five lo­cal fam­i­lies Dec. 17 at the Hor­sham fa­cil­ity.

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