Christmas Collection For Fire Victims

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POTTSVILLE -- Three families from Pottsville who lost everything in a fire right before Thanksgiving are now getting a chance to have a happy holiday.

It's thanks to the support of the community and a group of volunteers who want to make sure they have a Merry Christmas

The families were forced out of their homes on Schuylkill Avenue in Pottsville in November. Some were helped by the Red Cross, while others stayed in motels for weeks.

That included Nicole Spitler and her daughters ages 5 and 11 and her 2-year-old son.  They're now living in public housing in Pottsville.  Spliter gives a lot of credit to the community.

"They all came together and they have been amazing for me and the children and not just for us for the other families involved without them it would have been a lot tougher for us," Spitler said.

With Christmas less than two weeks away, more help for those who lost everything. And that help is coming in the form of gifts for fire victims. The project is called the Christmas Hope Workshop.

Michelle Yarnell said she  heads up the volunteers.

"There are people in Schuylkill County that care and they're trying to get everything together in their new homes and the last thing they should be worried about is Christmas."

Nicole Splitler said the communities support and Michelle Yarnell amazes  her.

"She's amazing to do this for people she doesn't know, I`m sorry, we love her to death she's like family."

If you want to be Santa's helper you can drop off toys and donations at Leslie's Gift Shop and Greenhouse on Park Street in Mechanicsville starting next week, Monday  through Friday between 8 a.m. and 4 p.m. and on Saturday between 9 a.m. and  2 p.m.