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O'Neal speaking to the kids

Santa visits Wall Street community

Staff Report

The Wall Street Community Center held its second annual "Santa's Coming to Town" celebration last week. Over 150 children attended to not only receive toys from Santa's sack but also hear the telling of the Christmas story.

"We started doing this event because we wanted to bring value to our community by investing in our kids and showing our senior citizens that we care about them," Wall Street Community Center director Lawrence A. O'Neal said. "This group of community organizers believes that paying it forward is vital and it is their responsibility. We thank God for the prompting He placed on our hearts and we promise to glorify Him in all things."

Refreshments were served, while visitors participated in crafts while listening to Christmas music. Each child received a gift and picture with Santa. Among the gifts given were bikes, big wheels and a tablet.

"When most people think of giving back they think of monetary donations and although that is important, there are many other ways we can give back to our community," O'Neal added. "Every community has people who need to be reached by the love of others and that is something that we were led to do.

"At the celebration, whether it was cooking, serving food, cleaning, wrapping gifts, handing out gifts, keeping the kids orderly, checking people in at the front door or preparing boxes for the elders in the community, everyone was able to find something suitable for them.  These are all things that give back to the community that they were nurtured in and will provide examples to the children."

Craft Time

O'Neal thanked those who did their part. The list includes; Commissioner Junior Carleton, Wall Street 21st Century Community Learning Center, Wall Street Improvement Committee, Masonic Lodge in Shorter, 1220 Café, Bennett Law Firm, Heels and More, Dadeville High School Beta Club, Reeltown High School Key and Beta Club, RHS Quarterback Club, PrimeSouth Bank, Trustmark Bank, Susannah’s Photography, O’Neal and Son Lawncare, Griffin’s Retail Shop, Mr. Larry Foy, Mrs. Kami Scarborough, Pastor Kennebrew, and a host of unnamed donors.

"We would also like to thank everyone who prepared and served food, those who cleaned up, those who worked the arts and crafts, those who wrapped gifts, and everyone who had a hand in helping," O'Neal noted. "If we missed someone’s name we thank you and we sincerely apologize. We hope that each of them will help us again next year and that this inspires more people to want to bring joy to the community. 

"The greatest thing about giving back is that there are opportunities right here in our own communities.  It’s fun and it is so rewarding.  Just think of the impact it has on the children. Each child in our community is part of the future and if we do not do our part in inspiring them to be successful, they may not feel the need to be." 

*Photos Courtesy of Suzannah's Photography

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