Community Shelter needs Christmas donations; grieving Charlotte family donates Christmas to a family

Spreading Christmas cheer despite tragedy

CHARLOTTE, NC (WBTV) - Teresa Moore wasn’t feeling Christmas this year.

“It’s that hole in your heart and having that there,” said Moore. “I mean there’s an empty spot in the family. There’s an empty spot in our life and it just does not feel like it’s the right thing.”

Moore’s son, Matt Midkiff, was killed this summer in Charlotte by a hit and run driver.

“We just can’t seem to bring ourselves to decorate or really get into the whole spirit,” she said. “Although giving is different.”

Moore and her family decided to take what would have been their Christmas and donate it to a family who otherwise wouldn’t be able to celebrate Christmas.

“It’s not so much about us. I mean we have this huge loss but honestly we’re not alone in that. Other people have it too and there’s just various was to try to channel that loss. And that’s what we wanted to do was to be able to give back because we’re hurting,” said Moore. “To me if we can do something for somebody else that’s what I wanted to do and maybe that would help. Maybe that would help the empty piece in our life and in our heart. I don’t know.”

Community Shelter of Union County in Monroe needs donations.

“During the Christmas season we want to make sure those who are experiencing homeless also can have an opportunity to experience the season of giving and the season of Christmas,” said Kathy Bragg. “It really is a time for us all to just kind of take a moment, be grateful for what we have and the opportunity to share it with others who don’t.”

A chaplain introduced Teresa Moore to Community Shelter.

The spirit of giving resonated with Moore.

That Moore was ready to donate Christmas – a tree, gifts, and food to cook a Christmas meal to a family - resonated with Community Shelter.

The nonprofit provides emergency shelter for single adults and families, food programs and rehousing of homeless families.

Bragg, the Chief Executive Officer of Community Shelter, says they service about 625 people a year in the homeless program, 20,000 clients in overnight stays, and pay for families to reside temporarily in local motels.

For Christmas, they collect $25 gift cards and personal items for single adults, and toys and gifts for children, and anything people can give to supplement families.

They’re still people to adopt families for Christmas.

“We like to think at the community shelter we’re not just about us helping people but we’re also a vessel for the community who wants to help,” said Bragg. “And for some of these kids they wouldn’t have a Christmas if not for someone in the community adopting one of our families.”

“It’s such an important thing. There’s no better feeling than to be able to see the smile on children’s faces or even for some of our adults. We sometimes give presents to them to give to their grandchildren that they just don’t have any means to buy themselves,” said Bragg.

“If we can provide that to children who happen to be in a rough situation right now – you know and that’s the thing – people have less and we want to be able to try to help somebody that’s in need and maybe when they get on their feet maybe they’ll be able to pay it forward,” said Moore.

Moore says the Christmas donation is something her late son would have wanted done.

“He was always giving and he always to do for other people anyway and he would give you the shirt off his back literally if you wanted it and needed it,” she said. “I think it’s the right thing for us to try to carry that on.”

“I think about when my kids were young and they would get up Christmas morning and they had their gifts. It was the excitement and the meal and the family time. So to be able to somewhat provide that for another family makes me feel like… I think it’s doing more for us maybe in some ways than it is for them” said Moore.

So while when the season started her family didn’t feel like decorating, Moore says the meaning of Christmas has given them a different feeling.

“I don’t even know how it feels. It just sort of fills that void that’s there and I think it’s something that Matthew would want” said Moore.

Anyone willing to donate or adopt a family at Community Shelter of Union County, can contact Sandra Clark at 704-289-5300 or go to their website: unionshelter.org and click on the tab to make a donation.

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