Spirit of Christmas: Charity helps local family following young boys' 7 heart surgeries

A local charity that helps with winter heating bills, wants working families to know - they can get help too. ABCCM says families that may not typically qualify for assistance will not be left in the cold. (Photo credit: Jodi Allen)

It's one of 6-year-old Davis Donovan's favorite ornaments, a gingerbread man hanging on his family’s Christmas tree in their living room. His true favorite is a little snowman, with his name, Davis, written on it, in cursive. It hangs from the doorknob that leads to his bedroom, he says he can’t let us see with a sheepish grin.

Though shy, when asked if he’ll allow us to put a microphone on him, he quickly shifts his attention to a more important activity, manipulating the joystick to play his treasured video game called Game Rocket.

“You can do front flips and stuff,” said Davis, as he moves the animated car across a playing field. You’d never know this little boy has been through seven heart surgeries all to keep him alive. He was born with a congenital heart defect. Which brings us to last month, when his mother Jodi, said he had to have an emergency heart catheterization surgery at the children’s hospital more than two hours away in Winston-Salem.

“He ended up having to go in,” said Jodi. “And I missed an entire week of work.”

It was a critical week of pay that would have covered her November heating bill. Jodi said she knew where to turn for help.

“ABCCM is so wonderful. I think they paid $111, for my bill,” said Jodi.

“These families are the kind of families we’d all want to help,” said Rev Scott Rogers who runs ABCCM. While there is criteria and families must fall below an income level, the charity makes exceptions when working families fall on hard times and are struggling week to week due to an emergency. Rogers wants the community to know the Christian charity is there for them.

“And that was the case with Jodi and her family. Where they were just over the line in terms of qualifying. They came to us,” said Rogers.

Jodi works for Amazon and she said she makes enough to support herself and her two young children. But she needed help.

"I think some people think if they work it's wrong to ask, or they're afraid for embarrassed to. But if you need the help, especially in a situation like mine, that's not all the time, it's a one time need, don't be ashamed. It's better than having your power off for a month. having people there that can help you is not something to be ashamed of, it's a blessing.” for more information, click here.

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