CHARLESTON, W.Va. -- Life can be tough for young parents struggling to make ends meet. But the Children's Home Society can step in to make sure kids have warm clothes and an easier life.Scott Foley, a regional director with the Children's Home Society, said two local families are typical of the kinds of folks who turn to the charitable organization for help during the holidays.Elizabeth, a 39-year-old mother of two, is a single mom struggling to take care of her feeble mother, manage a 10-year-old daughter with autism and provide for her 5-year-old girl. Unemployed because of an illness, she survives on $150 a month in food stamps, though she is fortunate to live with her ailing mother.But Foley said utility bills and mounting doctors' bills make it hard to take care of her children, who are desperately in need of winter clothes.
Michael and Tarra, aged 42 and 35, are in similar trouble trying to take care of 15-year-old Tommy, 8-year-old Scotty and 1-year-old Carrie. Foley said Michael was laid off, and Tarra is trying to find a job.
He said the family did all right for the first six months after Michael was laid off, but utility bills and putting clothes on growing children has begun to take a toll on the family's meager finances. Michael and Tarra fear they will not be able to provide a Christmas for their children.Tommy keeps talking about new Xbox 360 games, and Scotty loves fire trucks.To help the Children's Home Society, please consider donating to the Gazette Charities Christmas Fund. (Look for the donation form on Page 13A.)When you make a donation to the Gazette Charities Fund, every penny goes to the agencies and people who need help.The Gazette covers the administrative costs of the fund. All donations to Gazette Charities are tax-deductible. To donate online, go to wvgazette.com and click on the Gazette Charities Christmas Fund logo.