To the Editor:

As everyone knows, this was a year unlike any other. The pandemic caused so many changes in our usual way of doing things. There was no exception for Christmas for Kids and Christmas for Teens. We were truly challenged with providing Christmas for the families as well as keeping everyone safe. We were blessed with many helping hands and constructive ways of delivering.

On behalf of the Board of Directors of Rightstart, Inc., Christmas for Kids and Christmas for Teens programs, we would like to thank the many schools, businesses, banks, credit unions, churches, civic groups and individuals in the Oxford Hills community as well as individuals who live outside the Oxford Hills for their support of these programs. Rightstart is an all-volunteer organization serving children and teens in the Oxford Hills.

From cash donations, gifts of toys, hand knit mittens, hats, scarves and slippers, once again our community joined together to help over 351 children and 173 teens in the Oxford Hills enjoy Christmas 2020.

We would like to thank the Advertiser Democrat for their coverage of our programs. A special thank you to the Bahre Family for their support and for the space they allowed us to use for the Christmas for Kids and Teens program as well as the Coat Room. Thank you to Oxford Federal Credit Union for allowing us to collect toys in their lobby. We received many wonderful toys as a result. A special thank you to Stan Bennett and WOXO for the wonderful Radiothon which helped raise sone of the necessary funds for the programs. Thank you to the Oxford Hills Chamber of Commerce especially John Williams who allowed us to use the Chamber as a drop off for gifts as well as distributing and collecting applications 2020. John also helped with the Radiothon. Thank you to Diane Gerry and the SAD#17 Central Office for your help in dealing with applications. We extend thanks to Norway Savings Bank, C.N. Brown, WOXO, and Wal-mart for all they did to support our programs. Thank you to Paris Public Library for collecting so many knitted and crocheted items and the community for making and donating them. Thank you to the Weary Club, Swinging Bears, Big Rig Shop, Oxford Hills Snow Hoppers, Norway Fish and Game and Toys for Tots for their contributions to our program, as well as Chris and Heidi Charlton and Ryan Brown for their help with our programs.

Christmas for Teens wishes to thank the many groups listed above, including Maine Machine Products, Oxford Casino, Oxford Hills Rotary, Oxford Mill End Store, Crossway Family Dental, United Bikers of Maine, WOXO, and Northeast Bank for their cash donations and the many collected items from their employees and clients. A special thanks to Monica LaVerdiere of Bearfoot Realty for their fundraiser which collected and raised many financial donations along with gift cards and items from not only our community, but many with ties to our area from our state and beyond. Also, we would like to thank Carol West, who organized the shoppers, especially Rose Schwaner and Carlene Treadwell. The generosity of this community continues to amaze us all with your support in these very different times.

Last but not least, a big thank you to Janis Hutchins and Sue Batchelder for all the time, talent and energy they put into the Christmas for Kids Program, as well as Heather Delamater, Rachel Edwards, Art Kenney, Sheila and Cleon Morse, Lynette Gatchell-Seames and Ray Seames, Debbie and Don Koczum.

We appreciate the support of the entire Oxford Hills community.

Connie Allen

Jean Delamater

Susan Batchelder

Janis Hutchins

Carlene Treadwell

Carol West

Doreen Tibbetts

John Williams 

Wendy Williams

Heather Delamater

Rachel Edwards

Rightstart Board of Directors


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