As the holiday season approaches, the “Street Angels” are giving back to the town of Monson, once again. The Angels want to provide Christmas cheer throughout the town, despite the natural disasters that have left several families without a place to call home.
“We’re giving the gift of hope,” said Street Angel Gail Morrissey.
This holiday season, the Street Angels are going the extra mile for victims of the June 1 tornadoes. Angels Karen Maggi, Karen King and Gail Morrissey plan on giving personalized baskets to residents of Monson.
King, the recipient of the “Good Neighbor Award”, received a check for $1500 to any charity of her choice. She, of course, picked the “Street Angels.” With the money, the Angels have been able to go shopping for goodies for the baskets. The rest of the goodies will come from church donations and from donation drives held by different types of groups trying to help out the cause.
The Angels plan on distributing two types of baskets to Monson families, one for Christmas and one for families when they move back into their homes or rebuild a new home. Each basket will contain an angel, freshly baked cookies, hot chocolate and mugs that read “Monson Strong”.
Maggi wants residents to remember that people haven’t forgotten about them and the struggles they still face even five months after the tornado.
“We haven’t forgotten, we’re going to celebrate together,” Maggi said.
The Angels plan on asking for the help of the Girl Scouts and church groups to decorate the boxes for cookies as well as from crafty volunteers to help create the baskets. They will be holding workshops for decorating the boxes and organizing the baskets on Dec. 3 and 9.
Magge, Morrissey and King plan on distributing the baskets to the section of town they have been providing help to since the tornado hit back in June.
“We want every area to be touched by us,” Maggi said.
To help out with the baskets or for more information on the “Street Angels” organization, visit the “Street Angel” Facebook page: http://www.facebook.com/pages/Street-Angel/183252871760656.
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About the authors
Students in Steve Fox's Investigative Journalism & the Web class at UMass-Amherst have teamed up with the Globe to take a close-up look at the painful process of rebuilding from the June 2011 tornadoes that killed four and devastated communities in the Springfield area. Their work will also appear in the Boston Globe. Steve joined the journalism faculty at UMass-Amherst in 2007 and has 25 years of experience as an editor and reporter for print and online publications, including 10 as an editor at The Washington Post's award-winning website.