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Gifts would help reunite family

Editor’s note: Light One Candle is an annual series sponsored by the Mail Tribune that focuses on an individual, group or agency that could use a helping hand during the holiday season. Once that need is filled, donations may be distributed to others in need.

By Sarah Lemon

for the Mail Tribune

After four years of spending Christmas apart, this family is making up for lost time.

A few gifts would help the mother and four teens make happy holiday memories. With a good camera and some arts and crafts supplies, they hope to make a scrapbook and decorations for their Central Point home.

Domestic violence, divorce and custody disputes long separated the 38-year-old mother from her 13- and 17-year-old sons. In August, she gained custody of the boys, who were initially unhappy about living with their mom and 15- and 18-year-old sisters. Years of the abuser’s manipulation had dismantled the boys’ relationship with their mother. Rebuilding those bonds has come through therapy and support groups for survivors of domestic violence.

Abuse also isolated the family from a loving grandmother, who recently relocated to the Rogue Valley to help her daughter and grandchildren through this transition. Cooking for their grandmother is among the kids’ holiday wishes. A cookbook and gift cards for groceries would assist their effort.

Other activities and items that would foster family togetherness are movie-theater passes and board games. The entire family wants to keep journals together, and they all need blank books for the endeavor.

The mother is hoping that each of her kids could receive some new clothing and socks. She would appreciate gift cards toward their purchase.

Advocacy and support for this family have come from the Medford-based nonprofit organization Community Works, which serves survivors of domestic violence and sexual assault, as well as high-need youth and their families.

To help, call Gerry Sea at 541-779-2393, ext. 222.