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December 22, 2005 Issue

Jefferson County High School students work to produce the plain beige, featureless dolls that will become a part of the Kiwanis hospital dolls program.



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Class makes dolls for children in local hospital



Other Top Stories
Glascock chamber closing
Clerks sell alcohol to underage buyers

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Class makes dolls for children in local hospital

Dolls could help children cope with the difficult experience

By Jennifer Flowers
Apprentice

For children, going to the hospital can be an unpleasant and frightening experience. In many cases, they do not understand what is happening to them or recognize the unfamiliar equipment by which they are surrounded.

As a result of a partnership between the Louisville Kiwanis Club and the Introduction to Family Services class at Jefferson County High School, some of those fears will be alleviated through Kiwanis hospital dolls.

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The beige, featureless dolls can be used in a variety of ways to help children cope with all the emotions they experience during a hospital visit.

The dolls can be a welcome diversion, as children are able to draw on them or squeeze them when they're anxious. Kids can color in faces on the dolls to express how they feel or mark on it to show where there is pain. In addition, the doctor can demonstrate the procedure the child must undergo on the doll first so that he or she can better understand the process or even "help" the doctor perform the procedure on the doll.

After the hospital visit is over, the child is able to take the doll home as a positive reminder of a more pleasant hospital experience.

Now, more than 25 hospital dolls have been completed and are ready to be used locally at Jefferson Hospital and nearby pediatric offices.

Jessie Williams, a member of the Louisville Kiwanis Club, had been trying to get the project off the ground for a number of years but had struggled to find a group of people that was both willing and able to make the dolls.

Finally, about a month ago, a connection was made when Stephanie Hildebrant, an administrator at Jefferson County High School and a member of the Louisville Kiwanis Club, approached Tammy Hodges, who teaches family services classes at Jefferson County High School, about making the dolls.

"I usually try to incorporate a service project into every one of the family services classes," Hodges explained, noting that past projects had included the creation of Easter baskets and jack-o-lanterns, which will probably be done by other family services classes in the future.

Because of her involvement with both the school and the Kiwanis Club, Hildebrant was aware that the family services classes were in need of a service project and that the Kiwanis hospital dolls would probably be an excellent fit.

"We just thought it would be a perfect match," Hildebrant said.

White cotton fabric, a large box of fiber fill and thread were the only materials needed to make the dolls.

The class worked together to assemble the dolls, dividing themselves into small groups. Each station was made up of a few people assigned to a specific task.

"It's like a little production line almost," Hodges said.

First, the cutting table placed a doll pattern on the fabric and cut out the design. The sewing table then inserted a tag and stitched the doll. Next, it was turned inside out, ironed and stuffed. The hand sewing table then added the final stitches to the doll before sending it to the necktie table to receive one of the handmade neck ornaments explaining the partnership between the family services classes and Kiwanis.

Finally, after all the other steps had been done, the quality control table made sure that the final product was up to par before placing it in the pile of those that had been completed.

While seeking out more information about Kiwanis hospital dolls, Hodges found that one club had added hospital gowns to the plain dolls. She liked the idea and decided to try it, as she would be able to use fabric scraps that had been donated in the past.

So far, the class has only made the gowns for practice, but next semester's group may actually incorporate the gowns as part of the dolls' attire.

The dolls were presented to the Louisville Kiwanis Club at Jefferson County High School's annual Christmas assembly on Dec. 16.

Before they take them to the hospital, Kiwanis members will purchase a package of markers to be included with each doll so that the kids can color them.

Hodges was pleased with the final product and wishes to continue making the dolls in the future, an idea that also appeals to the Kiwanis Club.

"We look forward to having this be a project each semester," Hildebrant said.



Glascock chamber closing

Board unable to find new director to fill position

By Faye Ellison
Staff Writer

The Glascock County Chamber of Commerce will close its doors for the last time on Saturday, Dec. 31. Executive Director D'Ann Simpson sent letters out to Glascock County businesses making them aware of the development.

Simpson and the Board of Directors, which includes Misty May-chairman, Gail Berry-vice chairman, James Stephens-treasurer, Carol Markins and Lee Griffin, searched for a candidate to fill Simpson's shoes, but had no takers.

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"Although we have made great strides in bringing this county closer together," Simpson said, "it is with regret that we must announce the closing of our office."

The job needed a volunteer to donate about 20-30 hours of his or her time each week for Chamber business. Simpson has kept the Chamber open for the past three years, but felt it was time to move on.

"I loved working at the Chamber, but it was just time to close it," she said. "After considering all aspects of running a Chamber, the Board felt it is in the best interest of our community to close at this time."

Though the Chamber has to close its doors, Simpson said that much of the information the Chamber had will be given to the Glascock County Development Authority. According to Simpson, the Chamber played a vital role in the reactivation of the Glascock County Industrial Development Authority.

"The Chamber will be passing on a lot of their information and contacts to the Development Authority," Simpson said.

Right now the Development Authority is currently housed in the old school in the same area as the County Commission office.

Not only does the Chamber help local businesses by promoting them in their own county, but also tries to get out-of-town customers to use their services.

The Chamber has been at the helm of many projects over the past three years. Most recently the Chamber hosted the first-ever, Community Vision Forum. Simpson said this forum brought together the county, city and school offices, along with some of the local stakeholders, to review the needs and desires of the residents of Glascock County.

The most recent success of the Chamber was WinterFest, held the weekend after Thanksgiving. There were over 60 vendors on hand to serve a crowd that came from many different counties.

Simpson said she hopes that the community support will not go away, but shift to supporting the Development Authority.

"I would like to say thank you for all the community support for the Chamber," she said. "I hope they will continue to support us through the Development Authority."



Clerks sell alcohol to underage buyers

Georgia Dept. of Revenue operation ended in six arrests across Jefferson County

By Ben Roberts
Staff Writer

Six businesses in Jefferson County could face fines and administrative probation after their employees sold alcoholic beverages to an under-age buyer for the Department of Revenue.

According to Special Agent Richard Padgett of the Georgia Department of Revenue's Alcohol and Tobacco Division,agents conducted a periodic check on Nov. 29 at 18 businesses in Jefferson County that hold state licenses to sell alcoholic beverages.

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Padgett said an employee at each of the six businesses cited sold alcohol to an under-age buyer without any identification while an undercover agent witnessed the transaction.

Those six businesses were: Louisville Package and Blocker's Package Shop, both of Louisville; Hadden's IGA and Jet Food Store numbers 17 and 65, all of Wrens; and Jet Food Store number 67 of Matthews.

Padgett explained the employees that sold the alcohol had warrants issued for their arrest, charging them with furnishing alcohol to person under 21 years of age.

Each of the six businesses were also charged with an administrative citation. Pending a hearing next month, those businesses will find out what disciplinary action they face.

Padgett said that typically includes fines with a possible probationary period.

Padgett said the underage buyer was a 19-year old Department of Revenue employee who had no personal belongings on him other than the money used to make the sale.

If asked for a form of identification, the buyer could then truthfully answer he did not have one on him.

Padgett said the buyer "looks his age" and lacked facial hair.

"We don't try to be deceptive. He was a typical 19-year old," the agent said.

Padgett said the Department of Revenue's Augusta office covers 13 area counties and the recent check of Jefferson County businesses was simply a periodic check and not the result of any suspected criminal activity or tips made on the businesses themselves.




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