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UK CIRCLE OF LOVE BENEFITS
COMMUNITY CHILDREN'S HOLIDAYS

By Selena Stevens

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The UK Circle of Love matches local underprivileged elementary school children with UK faculty, staff and students who will make holidays a little brighter for the children.

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Nov. 10, 2000 – (Lexington, Ky.) – You never know what could make a difference in the life of a child, especially at Christmas time. It might be a bike, a pair of gloves or just the thought that someone out there cares enough to give anything to an unknown child.

The University of Kentucky Circle of Love is one way to try and make that difference. The program matches local underprivileged elementary school children with UK faculty, staff and students who will make Christmas a little brighter for the children.

“We are their Santa,” said Anne Coke, executive assistant to the vice chancellor for student affairs and organizer of the annual circle. “Without this program, many of these children may not get anything at all for Christmas.”

Teachers and counselors from the schools compile lists of students and their wishes and send them to the University. The UK “Santas” select a student and purchase presents for the child based on the child’s “Wish List.” The lists often include everything from new shoes to the latest toy fad.

Both the Lexington Campus and the UK Chandler Medical Center offer a Circle of Love program, together reaching as many as 1,400 children.

“Often we have as many as five or six children in one family who are on the list, and we encourage groups of people or departments to go together to purchase gifts for them,” said Bonnie Thornton, chairperson of the Medical Center Circle of Love committee. “It not only helps a needy family, but becomes a great holiday project for that department.”

The kickoff for this year’s Lexington Campus Circle of Love will be Nov. 17 in the Great Hall of the UK Student Center. Names and wish lists will be available between 11 a.m. and 2 p.m. that day. Names also will be available in the Student Center’s Bridge Lounge from 9 a.m. to 2 p.m., Anderson Hall entrance from 9 a.m. to 2 p.m., Peterson Service Building pedway entrance from 9 a.m. to 1 p.m., Agriculture Science Center-North from 9 a.m. to 1 p.m. and 529 Patterson Office Tower from 8 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. Nov. 20 and 21. The wrapped gifts will be collected from 7:30 a.m. to 5 p.m. Dec. 5 and 6 in 206 Student Center.

At the UK Chandler Medical Center, wish lists will be available Nov. 17 and Nov. 20 through Nov. 22 in the hospital lobby and across from the Big Blue Deli. Gifts need to be wrapped and returned along with the wish list card Dec. 4 and 5 in the hospital lobby.

For more information on the Lexington Campus program, call 257-1911. For more information on the Medical Center program, call 323-6023.


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