Second relay center added to county

By Staff
This year churches, groups, and individuals can drop off their Operation Christmas Child gift-filled shoeboxes at Russellville First United Methodist Church or Red Bay First Baptist Church.
November 16-23 is the collection week in Franklin County and all of the United States.
In 2008, nearly 8 million shoebox gifts were collected in the United States and 10 other sending nations.
Families, churches, schools, scout groups, clubs, businesses, and many others experienced the joy of giving when they packed shoe boxes for children in faraway lands who have never received a Christmas present. Shoe box gifts of encouragement were delivered to children living in the legendary city of Timbuktu on the outskirts of the Sahara Desert and to war refugees in the Eastern European country of Georgia and heard the good news of God's love.
Children in almost 100 countries received these gifts. These boys and girls suffer from war, poverty, disease and natural disaster.
The two Franklin County Relay Centers place the boxes in cartons and deliver them to the collection centers in Decatur and Tupelo, Miss.
From there, they are hauled in tractor-trailers to Atlanta, which is one of six regional centers in the United States. Volunteers inspect the boxes and pack them for overseas delivery by planes and cargo ships.
Then they are delivered to churches, schools, orphanages, and children's hospitals by vehicles, small boats, helicopters, donkeys, elephants, bicycles, and every other possible way.
Russellville Relay Center Coordinator Kathy Archer explains, "It is a win-win situation for everyone involved. People packing the boxes have a fun and joyful time knowing they are helping to put a smile on a child's face and the children receiving the gifts are excited to get a present and know someone cares about them."
Call Russellville United Methodist or Red Bay First Baptist for drop off times each day during collection week. People can call Kathy Archer at (256) 331-3486 for additional information, brochures, bulletin inserts, promotional DVD, etc.