Good Samaritan Ministries "Be a Light" Christmas marketplace opens to families today

JOHNSON CITY, Tenn. (WJHL) - Good Samaritan Ministries of Johnson City is working to make sure area children and teenagers have Christmas presents under the tree this holiday season with a unique gift drive. 

Two holiday markets will be set up at Good Samaritan Ministries for teenagers and children where registered parents, guardians and caretakers can shop for presents and wrap them. 

They will be able to pick out items specifically for their loved ones, instead of having people buy the gifts and donate them.

This is something Good Samaritan Ministries believes empowers parents living in poverty and gives a personal touch to the gifts they will receive. 

"When they go back home they can say, 'Hey, I picked this out for you. I looked around, and I didn't have money, but I had time. And I invested that just for you.' So we want to provide that for all our neighbors in need," says Good Samaritan CEO Aaron Murphy. 

Volunteers will help caretakers shop and wrap the Christmas presents. The "Be a Light" holiday drive is a free service that is based on a point system for the families who utilize it. Points are given to parents based on how many children they are shopping for, the "price" of each toy varies in points. 

"We want every household to celebrate the birth of Jesus Christ and pure joy, pure happiness. If we can provide gifts for those children we are making a major difference in the community," says Murphy.

Volunteers are needed. Call the volunteer hotline if you would like to donate your time at 423-833-2557 or email volunter@goodsamjc.org. 

If you want to help, you can donate unwrapped, unused toys or make a monetary donation to Good Samaritan Ministries of Johnson City.

Good Samaritan Ministries is located on North Roan Street in Johnson City.

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