Hometown Hero: Greenbriar volunteer wrappers - WTOC-TV: Savannah, Beaufort, SC, News, Weather & Sports

Hometown Hero: Greenbriar volunteer wrappers

Hometown Hero: Greenbriar volunteer wrappers

(Source: WTOC) (Source: WTOC)

There is a special feeling around the Oglethorpe Mall these days.

“I enjoy the holiday period,’’ said Dr. Charles Gilyard, who is at the mall most days this time of year. “So, it's a natural for me to come out and wrap packages and see all the people humming around the mall, buying gifts to make everyone happy.’’

But Gilyard doesn't just appreciate that atmosphere; he helps create it by volunteering his time and gift-wrapping expertise at the Greenbriar Children's Center Gift Wrap Center. Every year at this time, dozens of volunteers go to the mall to help raise money for the facility that serves children removed from their home because of abuse or neglect.

"When you think about the purpose of the Gift Wrap Center,’’ said Greenbriar Executive Director, Gena Taylro, “and these people giving their service and their time to make sure the children we serve have a holly jolly Christmas, it does a lot for us at Greenbriar Children's Center.’’

The availability of trained, expert wrappers is also a service to anyone who has never acquired the skill themselves.

"I, for one, do not know how to wrap,’’ said Taylor. “So, I appreciate this service and I know the men on Dec. 24 at 5 p.m. appreciate the service a whole lot because we have them wrapped around the center, ready to get their gifts wrapped.’’

And by turning purchases into presents, complete with bows and ribbons, the wrappers are also supporting programs throughout the year at Greenbriar.

These WTOC Hometown Heroes raised $10,000 for Greenbriar last year, and hope to exceed that total this year.

"That's what I do. That's part of my ministry,’’ said Gilyard. “I think it's important to help those who need help, because we never know who that might be.’’

"I’ll do anything to help anybody in need,’’ added Me’Kia Davis, the manager of the Gift Wrap Center. “Just like Doctor Gilyard said, we never know who that could be in that situation, your family, yourself, so it's always good to help others.’

Especially when helping children.

"When we reach out to the occupants of Greenbriar,’’ said Gilyard, “then we really are building our future, helping somebody get to a better place.’’

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