Special Angel Tree lighting scheduled for Tuesday, donors can watch

LEXINGTON, Ky. (WTVQ) – The sights and sounds of Christmas are beginning to show up everywhere and even if those Christmas trees, angels, snowmen and Santa may look a little different, agencies that help those in need each year are working even harder this year.

The stress and hardship caused by the coronavirus pandemic is hitting places and families who’ve never been touched before.

The Court Appointed Special Advocate program, better known as CASA, is lighting its Angel Tree Tuesday with the help of Lexington Mayor Linda Gorton.

“Nationwide, individual giving has taken a small slump but imp hopeful that people here in Lexington and surrounding communities believe in enough of children that they will invest in them so we can move forward and make happy adults,” CASA Executive Director Melynda Jamison said.

The tree-lighting can be watched virtually.

The CASA Angel Tree represents the holiday wishes of dozens of abused and neglected children in Fayette County.

Sponsors cannot attend in-person this year, but they will still be able to sign up virtually to brighten the holidays for abused or neglected children by purchasing them gifts from their wish lists.

The Fayette County CASA Angel Tree ceremony will begin at 9:30 a.m. Nov. 10. Attendees can watch the lighting via Facebook Live on CASA of Lexington’s page.

CASA of Lexington provided advocacy for more than 530 Fayette County children moving through the family court system last year. Many of those children are living in foster care or residential facilities, and their families may not have the resources to get them many gifts.

The CASA Angel Tree program helps brighten these children’s holiday experiences. Many local families make it a tradition to sponsor a child from the CASA Angel Tree who is about the same age as their own children. Businesses and organizations also take pride in seeing how many children their employees or members can sponsor.

“McBrayer Law Firm’s attorneys and staff have stepped up for many CASA Angel Tree children over the years, and we’re excited to again serve as host for the tree,” said James H. Frazier III, Managing Member of McBrayer Law Firm. “CASA of Lexington’s volunteers provide a voice for abused children in our community, help them return to happy homes faster and give them hope. Brightening these kids’ holidays with gifts is one way we help achieve those goals.”

Those watching the Facebook Live feed will be able to sign up to sponsor a child by commenting with their contact information and preferences for a child. After the live event, sponsors can also sign up by emailing angeltree@casaoflexington.org.

To help without sponsoring a child, CASA of Lexington also has an Amazon wish list available at bit.ly/casa-angel-tree-2020, filled with many of the most requested gifts. People can purchase items from the wish list and CASA of Lexington will ensure they are delivered to a CASA child along with other gifts.

Everyone buying gifts for CASA children will deliver them, unwrapped, to the CASA of Lexington office, 3245 Loch Ness Dr., Lexington, KY 40517; or McBrayer’s office in the Chase Bank Building, 201 E. Main St., #900, Lexington, KY 40507, by Dec. 2. The CASA volunteers who visit the children regularly will then ensure the gifts are delivered in a timely manner.

“Every year, the CASA Angel Tree is one of our happiest, most joyous projects,” Jamison said. “Our sponsors are amazingly generous with their gifts. But an even greater gift is the smiles they put on our CASA children’s faces.”

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