12/21/08 — Goldsboro Milling employees help families at Christmas

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Goldsboro Milling employees help families at Christmas

By Catharin Shepard
Published in News on December 21, 2008 2:00 AM

At the Goldsboro Milling Co. office, the spirit of giving burst into bloom as a host of angels sprouted on one special evergreen in the company's main office.

The company has donated Christmas presents to needy children since Hurricane Floyd flooded parts of eastern North Carolina in 1999.

This year, employees adopted 30 little angels from the Boys & Girls Club.

"We pick out children who have more needs than others," said Mary Ann Dudley, club director.

All of the children selected are members of the club, she said.

Paper angels with each child's name, sex and special wishes went on the company tree, and Goldsboro Milling employees adopted them.

"It makes you feel good to be able to go and help somebody," said Katy Parker, an employee in the packaging department.

It is Ms. Parker's first year with the company and her first year participating in the Angel Tree. She shopped for a little girl who loves Hannah Montana and needed some clothing.

"It was definitely a good experience," she said.

Nutritionist Chris Parks has been helping others since he himself was a child -- even though he didn't realize what it was all about, back then.

"As a kid, I didn't understand" when his parents enlisted his help in charity events, he said.

Parks took his 5-year-old son and 2-year-old daughter with him this year to choose an angel from the tree and to shop for gifts.

"I wanted the little boy to understand what we're doing and why we're doing it," Parks said. "I think it kinda opened his eyes."

The response from the office was tremendous, he said.

"It went fast. There weren't many left" when they picked out an angel, he added.

The child they shopped for likes video games, dancing and music, and needed a warm winter coat.

"We picked some toys I thought were pretty cool," Parks said.

The children have to wait until next week to open their gifts, and the company employees will receive thank-you letters along with a photo of the club members enjoying their presents.

Sandra Mileski organized the tree on behalf of the Goldsboro Milling Company, in conjunction with Mrs. Dudley at the Boys & Girls Club.