“We figure we better start, because we’re anticipating a lot more need this year,” the third-year director said this week.
“More need” would not be new territory for Brighter Christmas, which each year seems to sign up more families and children for food and toys.
Abercrombie said the 2011 effort helped 900 families and 2,000 children, while Tracy Interfaith Ministries, a local food pantry, helped about 500 more families.
That’s one of the reasons Abercrombie is pushing a Brighter Christmas fundraising effort in 95-degree weather. And it doesn’t hurt that his youngest child is the drive’s creative spark.
For $15 each, Abercrombie is selling an illustrated book that revolves around the wit and wisdom of 4-year-old Carly Abercrombie. “The World According to Carly,” is illustrated with cartoons by Mikaela Purcell and paintings by Tammy Granado.
The words come from Abercrombie’s notebook.
“Having older kids, I always thought, man, I should have written down some of the things my older kids said,” he explained. “So I started writing them down and shared a few on Facebook, and people seemed to really enjoy them.”
The book was a logical next step, he said.
So far, 50 of the booklets have sold, and Abercrombie plans to have another run ready no later than Aug. 3.
“It’s really great that people want to help out,” he said.
The book’s creative talent doesn’t seem shy, either. Carly has already signed books sold at City Hall, said Abercrombie, a city councilman, and she’ll sign more books at noon Aug. 18, a Saturday, at the West Valley Mall Barnes & Noble.
But Abercrombie acknowledged the charity will need more help down the road to meet what he expects is a growing need.
“The economy always goes up and down, so we’ve always been very prudent and hope people will step up once again donating food, toys or money to help out,” he said.
At a glance
• WHAT: “The World According to Carly”
• WHEN: Noon Aug. 18
• WHERE: Barnes & Noble Booksellers, 3150 Naglee Road, at the West Valley Mall
• DETAILS: Books can also be purchased by emailing Brighter Christmas Director Steve Abercrombie at email@example.com.