GREENVILLE — Christmas arrived a little early this year as the Helping Hands 4-H Club held its third annual holiday craft and vendor bazaar on Saturday at the Greenville Moose Lodge. The event is part of the club’s community service activities, with the proceeds going towards a family in need.
Jessie Smith, an advisor for the event, shared how the club adopts an area family in need with the assistance of the Darke County Operation Christmas Cheer. While the club is not provided with a name, they are given basic information such as a boy or a girl and the ages, along with a list of what the children may need, such as clothing and shoes. However, it is not only basic needs but also what a child may want.
“We try to get a good portion of the wants, so they get a mix of what they need and things they’d like to have,” said Smith. The club will also buy non-perishable items so the whole family will benefit as well as gift cards to area stores.
When asked how the 4-H club became involved with helping a family at Christmas time, Smith shared that a club member had had a difficult year – from a fire to the loss of a family member. The group pulled together to help the struggling family.
“And it went from there, every year,” said Smith. “The kids wanted to help [and] they want to keep helping a family each year.”
Instead of traditional fundraising, the group decided on a craft and vendor fair, with the Greenville Moose Lodge generously donating the space.
The Greenville Moose Lodge will also donate to the club to help the family in need.
This year, the event sold all their vendor space which welcomed Pink Zebra, Saltz, and Scentz, Usborne Books, Scentsy, Norwex, Pampered Chef, Thirty-One, homemade soaps, crocheted and home-sewn items, woodcrafts, handmade pottery, American Girl doll clothes, and the work of The Rock Lady. The 4-H club members also held a bake sale.
There are currently 18 children from K-12 in the 4-H Club, which also includes the Clover Buds. Smith shared how her mother, Barbara Potter, was the original club founder. Smith grew up in the 4-H Club, and after her mother passed away two years ago took over the group.
The annual holiday craft and vendor bazaar is one of two community service activities for the club. They also participate in the Darke County Trash Bash with the Solid Waste District.
Trash Bash is a countywide clean-up that promotes a clean environment by cleaning the roadsides and ditches within Darke County every April.
The Helping Hands 4-H Holiday Bazaar has already begun plans for next year’s event. For anyone who may be interested, craft booths and vendor applications are available. The event will be held from 10 a.m. to 3 p.m. on Saturday, Oct. 17, 2020. Contact Jessie Smith for more information or donations via email at firstname.lastname@example.org.