TLC Community Center now accepting donations for annual Bundles of Love

The TLC Community Center is beginning its collection of items for its annual Bundles of Love project, aiming to continue the success they found last year.

Director Angie Odom said last year was the first time they ever hit their 1,000 bag goal since they started the project.

“Our goal has always been 1,000 bags,” Odom said.

She said they hope to pull it off again this year.

Last year saw a large community participation, and though she said one prominent donor died this year, she said the center is still as determined as ever.

Bundles of Love is the center’s annual Christmas project, bringing bags of non-perishable food and hygiene items to children in need across the county before the winter break.

“We already know these kids from the Summer Food Program,” she said. “We give out food on a daily basis.”

The program has received sponsorship from and partnership with several local organizations over the years since the program’s inceptions. The cloth bags themselves come from the Northeast Community Credit Union, and they provide hundreds upon hundreds of them.

In terms of the items within those bags, Odom said they need hygiene items the most, including toothpaste and toothbrushes, bars of soap, gloves and caps for the upcoming winter weather and school supplies like notebook paper.

“Shampoo is often overlooked,” Odom said.

The program serves hundreds of children in the county each year right before winter break, when many children lose access to the resources schools provide.

“We pretty much give them out to all of Little Milligan,” Odom said. “We do not have to go outside our community to find kids in need.”

She said the center also appreciates non-perishable food donations like macaroni and ravioli.

Normally, the center organizes a work day during which volunteers can come and assemble the hundreds of Bundles of Love at the end of November before setting off in December. She said the center will announce that date by the end of September.

In the meantime, she said any donations are appreciated. In addition to sending items to the center directly, donors can bring item donations to Big John’s Closeouts or Winchester Quality Flooring in Elizabethton.

Monetary donations can be written out to the TLC Community Center and mailed to 145 Judge Don Lewis Blvd.

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