The Family Shelter of Southern Oklahoma always collects gifts for children under their roof, but this year, they’re holding a gift drive for their mothers as well.
The shelter, which serves women and children escaping domestic violence, sexual assault and stalking, is expanding their annual gift drive to include presents for the women who are staying there.   
“Our kiddos are taken care of, and our mommas can get forgotten about, and these are women who really never ask for anything for themselves,” victim advocate DeeDee Hunter said.
Bubble bath, shower gels, scented lotion, bathrobes, fuzzy socks, makeup and other personal care items make for good gifts.
“If you have a lady who has kids, she might want to take a bubble bath, put on some fuzzy socks and make dinner and relax,” Hunter said. “Can you imagine how that would feel after not being able do to that for so long?”
The shelter is still accepting donations for children as well, but once they realized they still had time before the holidays, they decided to expand the drive to include mothers as well.
“Last year, the moms were sort of put on the back-burner,” Hunter said. “This year we started early enough that the kids were taken care of and we can do something for the moms.”
Hunter said that for someone fleeing a domestic violence situation, seemingly small things like cozy socks make a difference.
“Often times, they weren’t allowed to wear makeup when they were with their abusers,” Hunter said. “That’s common. It’s a control thing.”
Hunter said gifts like makeup aren’t just pleasant. Women at the shelter are often starting over completely, and having makeup on hand before a job interview is one less thing to worry about.
“We want them to be able to feel confident,” Hunter said.
Hunter said donations can be dropped at the shelter’s administration area, located at 402 Pawnee NW in Ardmore. She said it’s best if the gifts aren’t wrapped when they’re donated, and the shelter will be accepting donations for mothers and children up to December 23.
“We will get new people in on the 23rd, no doubt about it, and we want to be able to give everyone something” Hunter said.