Love Cabinet donations sought

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Wood County Chief Juvenile Probation Officer Melanie Whitehurst, along with County Judge Lucy Hebron, are encouraging all county employees and residents to participate in a donation drive to benefit the probation office’s Love Cabinet and the Wood County Child Protection Board’s Rainbow Room, which serve children in need in the county. 

Whitehurst is hoping to fill up the Love Cabinet.

“There is a blessing in waiting almost 20 years for your turn to run a department. If you are observant, you can see where a need is and what you can do to fill that need. I was promoted to Chief Juvenile Probation Officer in June and one of the biggest things that I wanted to establish in the office is being able to fill the needs of kids and families that needed a hand up and not a hand out,” Whitehurst said. “So often, we see families that cannot provide the basic needs of their families, for various reasons. We will be able to purchase a few things through our budget, but I will need a community backing me to realize the blessing of this endeavor.”

According to Hebron, donations can be made in boxes located on the first floor of the Wood County Courthouse Monday through Friday from 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. All donations should be new and in original packaging. Monetary donations to the Rainbow Room should be sent directly to that agency.

Donations needed are hygiene products, coats, undergarments, outerwear, shoes, clothing, baby wipes, diapers, cleaning products, stuffed toys and battery powered alarm clocks. Also needed are school supplies: 1” binders, dividers, notebook paper, composition notebooks, mechanical pencils, pens, highlighters, colors (crayola), markers, map pencils, protractors, compass, pink erasers, scissors and folders with pockets.

“It is our hope to install a life skills class in our department,” Whitehurst said. “This class will teach kids about taxes, banks, budgets, auto repair, home making, cooking, interviewing, providing a honest day’s work for honest pay, and cleaning. This is not taught in our schools and some of our kids are not college material and will need to know what to expect when they get out of high school. We would eventually like to open most of the programs that we are offer to all children and their parents. This love closet will come in handy to help kids with interviews, preparedness, and organization.”

Monetary donations can also be made to the Love Cabinet project.

“Should you feel compelled to help us out or can find it in your pocket book to donate, please bring donations to our office. We are located in the basement of the courthouse,” Whitehurst added.  

Whitehurst can be reached at the office at 903-763-5772.

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