A small group of dedicated elves just wrapped up their Christmas shopping for the year.
Adopt A Family Carter County is a group of volunteers that buys Christmas presents for area families who are struggling during the holidays. Organizer Traci Woods said the group focuses on single working parents.
“This idea was born one night between me and two other girls,” Woods said. “We started out by deciding we were going to help five kids, and it’s ballooned into what you see in front of you today.”
 Volunteers call themselves “elves” and choose a family to buy gifts for, which can be anything from toys to clothes to food for breakfast on Christmas morning.
This year, the group set a goal of 10 families, but cleared it easily, ending up with a total of 20.
Christy Morehead, who works at Ardmore Vision and Laser Eye Center, said she reached out and offered to let Adopt A Family use the center as a drop-off point two years ago. Since then, much of the staff has become involved in the project.
“We would never be able to get it done without the community,” Morehead said.
Woods said the original core group of elves got involved because they knew what it was like to struggle during the holidays.
“All of us girls had grown up on an Angel Tree of some sort,” Woods said. “We’d all been down on our luck, we all had a little bit of money that year, and we decided we were going to do something.”
The group contacted churches, bus drivers and schools to find kids in need. Eventually, they expanded to helping entire families as more elves joined in.
“Christy and all these wonderful people have gotten involved and it’s turned into a great thing,” Woods said. “We try to fill in the gaps and cover the ones who make too much for other programs, but not enough to cover extras.”