Lynchburg YWCA Christmas Store Helps Families in Need

Lynchburg, Va- A Lynchburg woman is giving back to the community in a big way this holiday season. She has teamed up with the YWCA to bring Christmas to the women and children they serve.

Saturday, nearly 80 kids got to pick out gifts for themselves and their parents. Linda Robinson shopped all year long for this day. She also baked 2,500 cookies. She brought all of the goodies to the YWCA. The event was for families who stay in one of the five shelters in the Lynchburg area.

"It's the spirit of Christmas, joy and giving is my theme, joy and giving," said Linda Robinson, who coordinated the Christmas Store.

Giving gifts to children in need has always been a tradition for Linda Robinson, but this year is a little different.

"This year I wanted to do something on a bigger scale," said Robinson.

After her husband's untimely death 15 months ago, she decided to carry on his spirit, and give back to the community in a bigger way.

"He regretted that he wasn't going to be around to do it, so I'm kind of carrying on," said Robinson.

She decided to create the Christmas Shop.

"So I said, I'm going to go out, I'm going to reach out to people," said Robinson.

Children picked three gifts for themselves along with candy, clothes and shoes.

There was a grand total of 1,225 gifts to choose from.

"When they saw all those toys they were like ' ahh wow,'" said Linda Ellis-Williams, the Director for the YWCA.

Parents weren't left out of the exchange, kids selected a gift for them too.

The families wrapped the presents, made cards and decorated cookies. It was a moment of joy for those who have been victims of domestic violence.

"I just want to bless these kids," said Robinson.

"If you weren't in the Christmas spirit before, you'll definitely have it now," said Williams.

Robinson says that five families also received Christmas trees, along with everything they needed to decorate them. The event ended at 4 p.m., but she says they plan to keep giving. Any leftover presents and cookies, they plan to deliver to families in need Saturday evening.