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November 6, 2007

No Christmas Love

By Brittany Woodby

BWOODBY@CULLMANTIMES.COM

Hundreds of children throughout the county could spend the holidays alone, hungry and forgotten. After two decades of brightening the lives of needy families with toys and food donations, Christmas Love charity is no more.

“I tell you it’s mixed emotions,” founder Lorene Scott said. “I don’t know how to express myself about it.”

A press release from the organization said Scott was unable to continue the charity due to “circumstances beyond her control.”

“We just think it’s come a time for us to give it up,” Scott said. “We do want to express how much it has meant to us through the years.”

Scott had asked Betty Dover, who organizes Hanceville’s Angel Tree charity, to take over Christmas Love’s work. Dover said her group could not manage the amount of work it takes to run Christmas Love.

“We’re not county-wide,” Dover said. “We just do the Angel Tree locally. We don’t have the staff to do all (Scott) did.”

For the last several years, Christmas Love has accepted donated toys and food at the Cullman Civic Center, where they were divided up and distributed to families. Scott said she understood why other groups would have a hard time undertaking the project.

“It was a big thing. They just don’t have the space and all,” she said.

“It amazes me that people have spent so many years dedicated to something like that,” Dover said. “That’s a big project. The Angel Tree is a big project, but we don’t work on it all year around like Christmas Love.”

However, Scott said her biggest concern is that Christmas love does not die with the charity.

“We really hate to give (the organization) up, but we want it to live on,” she said. “If anyone has someone they know in need of a toy, we want them to go ahead and give that person a toy in the spirit of Christmas Love.”

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