Families appeal brings out best



JULIE O'Dell sheds a lot of tears at this time of year, but mostly tears of joy.

The Lifeline promotions and fundraising manager said yesterday the joyful and heartfelt reactions by her clients who have been sponsored in the Adopt-a-Family Christmas appeal are so touching, she can't help but shed a tear.

"Our clients, as you can imagine, have come through some fairly tough experiences and often struggle to just cope with the demands of daily life," Ms O'Dell said.

"They often have few possessions and so little faith in society that the generosity they experience through the appeal and the difference it makes to their Christmas is almost unbelievable.

"I do many of the deliveries myself and I see the reactions and they are genuine," she said.

"The clients often write letters or cards of thanks to their unknown sponsors, and reading them even a year later makes me weep with the joy and gratitude they express.

"They often have a theme of how they would do the same for someone else when their circumstances improve."

Four of the Lifeline families in this year's appeal have already been adopted, one by the staff of a local bank branch.

To sponsor a needy family in the appeal, turn to Page 7 of today's Daily News, choose a family from the list and contact the appropri- ate welfare officer.



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