By Tia Lynn Ivey
Over 160 families will wake up Christmas morning to generous spread of gifts for their children thanks to the Morgan County Sheriff’s Office annual Empty Stocking Fund program.
Throughout the year, the Sheriff’s Office has collected donated gifts and money to ensure struggling families still have a wonderful Christmas.
“We have taken it on as a project that we do every year to make sure the kids have a good Christmas with a little something under the tree for them in the morning,” said Sheriff Robert Markley, who took over the long-running program in 2001.
The Sheriff’s Office is grateful for the generosity of Morgan County citizens who donate each year to make the program possible.
“We would not be able to do this if it were not for our donors,” said Olivia Laborn, Chairperson of the Empty Stocking Fund. “Love and joy truly flow through the air as people of all kinds come together to help celebrate and make others happy at Christmas time. It makes us feel good that families can wake up on Christmas morning and have happiness in their homes. We want to thank everyone who donated this year to make this possible. We hope that everyone will have a Merry Christmas and extra blessed New Year,” said Laborn.
The Sheriff’s Office officially starts collecting donations for the program in October, but according to Laborn, people donate all throughout the year from individuals, businesses, churches, and community organizations.
“We are very luck to have generous citizens who think of us all year long. They know Christmas is a time for love and caring and they want to make sure they do all they can to ensure no child wakes up on Christmas morning without toys,” said Laborn.