While families across the country will be sitting down on Christmas morning to exchange presents and enjoy a table full of food, one Dawson County family will be heading up north to spread some holiday cheer to Hurricane Sandy victims.
Linda Clary Umberger and her family have eschewed the typical Christmas decorating and gift exchanges this year, opting to collect donations for people left without homes following the devastation of Hurricane Sandy, which hit the East Coast in late October.
A group called Adventures in Missions provides short-term mission trips for individuals, church groups and families, she explained. Its one of those things I have reflected on.
Umberger, along with her husband, Randy, and children Abby, Ben and Nathan, will travel to Ocean City, N.J., over the holidays to provide help to low-income families. Well be working with an existing ministry and relief organization thats already been set up, she said. The families, whose homes were destroyed in the storm, are underinsured or uninsured.
Well be doing a lot of manual labor, Umberger said. Well be stripping out sheet rock, digging underneath houses, things like that.
Before their trip, though, the Umbergers need help in collecting donations for the families theyll be helping. Well need blankets, hiking things, regular living things, items like that, she said. The list distributed by the ministry calls for travel-sized hygiene products like shampoo, shaving cream and toothpaste, as well as food products like drinking water, peanut butter and baby food and formula.
A complete list of items needed is as follows:
cordless screw gun
dry wall tools
Home Depot gift cards
personal hygiene items
socks and undergarments (for both men and women)
They have requested no clothes other than what is mentioned in the list, Umberger said.
A drop-off location is set up at Annis Chiropractic at 66 North 400 Center Lane, Ste. 105, Dawsonville. Donations may also be brought to the News & Advertiser office in downtown Dawsonville.
Monetary donations are welcome. People who wish to donate money can do so by calling Umberger at (770) 853-9922, or by going online to fundly.com/ocean-city-nj-sandy-relief-effort-umberger-family.