Beth and Wayne know life isn’t likely to get easier for them.
But even considering the difficulty of paying bills and feeding themselves, maybe the toughest thing for the couple is the thought that they’ll be a burden on their own children.
Residents of the area for the past eight years, Beth and Wayne (not their real names) are both disabled and receive limited monthly government assistance.
“I can no longer work due to disability and my husband has been disabled for 10 years,” said Beth, when she applied for assistance from the Empty Stocking Fund — coordinated by the Salvation Army.
Pride may seem like the biggest stumbling block to getting assistance from her own family, but Beth just doesn’t want her kids to end up being financially strained too — once they realize that their parents may need some help.
“This is the first year we have not been able to do anything. We have always provided gifts and Christmas dinner for our children,” Beth said. “We’re having a hard time accepting this.”
At least for one more year, all Beth wants is a family Christmas the way it always has been.
“We just want to feel like we can have our children come to our home and not feel like they are having to help us out,” Beth said. “We just don’t want our children to feel like they have to help us out all the time.”
Through the Empty Stocking Fund, a joint effort of the Salvation Army and the Clovis News Journal, Beth and Wayne’s family will receive a food basket that includes pancake mix, peanut butter, jelly, canned goods, cereal, beans, rice, sugar and macaroni and cheese.
More than 400 local families are scheduled to receive the baskets through the Empty Stocking Fund this holiday season.
Donations for the Empty Stocking Fund may be dropped off at the CNJ, 521 Pile St., or mailed to the CNJ, P.O. Box 1689, Clovis 88102-1689. Envelopes should be clearly marked to indicate they contain a donation for the Empty Stocking Fund.
All contributions will be forwarded to the Salvation Army.
People who would like to donate food or new Christmas toys or clothing items may do so at the Salvation Army office, 317 E. Second St.
Information is available by calling the Salvation Army office at 762-3801.