Christian Service Center uses "pay it forward" system to encourage people to give to receive

Christian Service Center uses "pay it forward" system to encourage people to give to receive

The Christian Service Center volunteers work tirelessly to provide for families in need, and they believe each child should get to experience Christmas.

Every year they set up a Christmas room full of toys and decorations for families.

"Christmas time is a great opportunity to share gifts and Christmas items that people cannot afford," said Jim Clark, the Director of The Christian Service Center.

This year, they're using a new system. Each family is asked to perform ten hours of community service in order to pick out gifts.

Melody Lovelace organized the room, and says the system encourages a chain of good deeds.

"It's a form of paying it forward. You help someone else out so your child can benefit by receiving Christmas," said Lovelace.

Other programs also work with the center to help provide kids with gifts.

"They're grateful. Overjoyed. It's like you gave them a million dollars or something. It means a lot to them," said Alice Martinez, a Family Advocate at Locust Headstart.

The Christian Service Center says they see an increase in clients around the holidays. A time when those who are down on their luck appreciate the center most.

"It makes me feel good, knowing that there is somebody that cares and is willing to help," said Noemi Pecina, a client of the center.

The Christmas room is open to the public Mondays through Fridays from 9 a.m. to 3 p.m. until December 21. On the last day it will close at noon.

The Christian Service Center is always accepting donations.

The building is located at 901 Mesquite Street in Abilene.
Donations are accepted at the back door of the center.
Right now they are most in need of mens jackets, blankets and sleeping bags.

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