A ‘golden’ holiday for westside children

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Messenger photos by Sarah Slayman
Lisa Burgess helps 2-year-old Kenny Rodgers of the Hilltop as he selects his toys at her non-profit’s third annual toy drive at the Hilltop United Methodist Church on Dec. 17. Burgess founded Corday’s Golden Heart as an effort to help stop crime in the community in honor of her son who died due to violence five years ago during the Christmas season. This particular event is a part of Corday’s Golden Christmas, which includes five days of giving away food, toys, clothes, and love to children on the westside. “In order for me to overcome that trauma, I chose to think outside of myself and try to pour my love back out into the community,” said Burgess.
As children file into Corday’s Golden Christmas toy drive, they are presented with many options for the items they would like to take home. Here, Dionna Zehner of the Hilltop United Methodist Church, helps sisters, (from left) Brianna and Bella Osterolh, find their favorites. “I just want to help kids have a good Christmas,” said Zehner.
Kenny Rodgers, 2, of the Hilltop grips his newly gifted toy. His family had never been to the church, but found out about the drive through a neighbor.
Joann Allen and Dannita Campbell help pass out festive baked goods at their church’s third annual toy drive for the Hilltop community. “Today is a great example of good things that happen in our neighborhood,” said Allen.

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