Where will you spend Christmas this year?
What if you were 10 years old and woke up on Christmas morning alone because your mom went to a party the night before and didn’t come home? What if you were seven years old and left alone to care for your younger brother and sister for days – scavenging for food, trying to keep them warm and safe, hoping Mom will come home but afraid of whom she will bring with her this time?
Christmas is especially difficult for orphans, because they long to be with their families, regardless of the circumstances that brought them to an orphanage. They tend to paint an imaginary picture of the family that could have been (and should be), where their parents love and care for them.
The staff at Collins Children’s Home in Seneca, SC, knows they can’t take away the pain of loss, but they can help children in their care overcome the abuse and neglect they suffered. Their prayer is that the children will be blessed and their hearts healed by the love and caring from the community as they celebrate the birth of Christ.
There are children who will be spending their first Christmas at Collins, and the staff looks forward to seeing the excitement on their faces as they experience a warm family atmosphere on Christmas morning. Hopefully they will be comforted by the other children who have already spent a Christmas there and know it will be a wonderful time filled with love and joy.
Children who have already experienced Christmas at Collins Home had this to say when asked, “What was Christmas like for you at Collins last year?”
“The one thing I enjoyed last Christmas was that my sister, brother and I were all together. It was special to me because it was a Christmas we were not separated. I enjoy being happy with them. It overwhelms me with joy to see all of us getting along. This is the thing that I thought was most special to me” (13-year-old).
“My first Christmas at Collins Home was both sad and exciting. I was sad because my Mom wasn’t with me. I was excited that I got amazing gifts from people that don’t even know me. That blew my mind. Why would someone do that? Then it dawned on me that it’s because there are good people in this world. This will be my third Christmas here at Collins Home and I’m looking forward to every minute of it” (16-year-old).
“Christmas at Collins Children’s Home has been great. My first Christmas was great, I got a scrapbook that is filled out now. I’ve given that book to my Mom. That Christmas was my favorite. I remember waking up and seeing the look on my face, it was the best so far (11-year-old).
“My best memory of Christmas at Collins Home was the year Santa brought me a Moped. I was so happy because it was a big surprise. I rode that Moped til it wouldn’t run anymore. When it stopped running, I started walking and I still like to walk” (As told by BK).
“Home… it’s not just a place, it’s a feeling that will remain with me for the rest of my life. I don’t know where I’d be today, if not for Collins Home” (Dalora, a past resident).
“It’s important that we continue to provide a home to children who may experience this feeling for the first time in their lives. The gifts we give not only allow the Collins Home to make an immediate impact on their children, it will follow them for the rest of their lives,” said Darrell Peer, chairman of Synod’s W.H. Dunlap Board. The Collins Home is one of several children’s homes supported by the Synod of the Associate Reformed Presbyterian Church.
You can also mail a check to:
Collins Children’s Home
P.O. Box 745
Seneca, SC 29679