Angels In Our Midst

Angels In Our Midst

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Angels in our Midst (Family Exchange Meetings)

Updated: Monday, September 9 2013, 08:26 PM CDT
Two young mothers with fast growing children, sharing a late night phone call.
That conversation led them to start an outreach to families across the area.
They are tonight's angels in our midst.

Holley Simmons-Kersey, Co-Founder, Family Exchange Meetings;  "Crystal called me up at eleven o'clock at night and asked me, Did we want to start a swap.  And I'll never forget it."

Crystal George, Co-Founder, Family Exchange Meetings;  "I said, How about we do a swap.  It's going to be free.  We can just do it in the community, get some people together and see how it goes."

Things went "very" well and that's what led Crystal George and Holley Kersey to start the family exchange meetings.  People could bring outgrown clothing, household goods, tools, anything and swap it for something else they needed.  The swaps are a blessing for families on tight budgets.

Crystal;  "We don't turn anybody away.  Even though they don't have clothes to bring to swap, we just say, Leave a small donation.  We're here to help you.  Take what you need."

Holley;  "Everything here is free and we just wanted to help people."

Being moms with three children each, the ladies could certainly understand the struggles of families trying to get by.  So many families, in fact, they left their front yard swap sites and took their mission on the road to churches in Pensacola and Milton that have welcomed them with open arms.

Darlene Downing, Shepherd House Ministries;  "I was just really surprised at how young she was, they both are and their commitment to this because there is a lot of work invovled in what they do.  I hope the people understand the sacrifice they are both making as young women."

Crystal;  "We always have been helped ourselves if we needed something.  So, it's time for us to give back and that's just what we started doing."

Help means making a run to the store when a child has no shoes and their size isn't on the swap table.  

Crystal;  "Sometimes we go out of our pocket.  We help the community; it's all about giving, to us."

And giving extra...

Holley;  "We gave Thanksgiving dinners; turkeys, hams for Thanksgiving.  And they were all, like, you could just see their face light up.  And that's why we do it; because it makes people happy."

Darlene Downing, Shepherd House Ministries;  "It says a lot to me that there is still hope in young people that have a desire to help."

Angels in our Midst is brought to you by Sacred Heart Children's Hospital.
Angels in our Midst (Family Exchange Meetings)

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