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Jane Ollis has been working with Operation REACH for more than 25 years. She said she remembers few years like this one.
With less than three weeks to go before they take children shopping, Ollis said Operation REACH is well below its fundraising goal.
“Our goal is $135,000, and we’ve got $28,800,” she said. “By this time, we normally have over half our goal.”
REACH is an acronym for Roane Enriches Another Child’s Holiday. The nonprofit program raises money to give less-fortunate children the opportunity to go Christmas shopping.
“Everybody’s just kind of shaking their heads,”
Ollis said. “They can’t believe that we’re so far
Ollis, REACH president, said REACH plans to take 565 children shopping.
“I don’t see how we’re going to be able to make our goal, but I’m always hopeful,” she said.
The shopping days are scheduled for Dec. 7-8 at Rockwood Walmart Supercenter.
Ollis said it cost $250 to sponsor a child and their family, but any donations will be welcome.
“This community is a giving and caring community,” she said.
“I just hope that we can come through for the people of Roane County.”
Donations can be mailed to Operation REACH at P.O. Box 981, Kingston, TN 37763.
Anyone interested in helping out or in need of more information about the program can contact Ollis or REACH treasurer Bobby Collier.
Ollis can be reached at 882-9544 or 466-8457. Collier can be reached at 376-5914 or 466-8893.
Ollis said she’s not sure why REACH is so far behind on fundraising this year.
“I don’t know if people are just not aware that REACH is right around the corner,” she said.
“It has come up on us kind of fast this year.”