Taylor Freer, 12, and Lily Freer, 9, received the agency’s “Doing the Most Good” award in the youth division.
“So proud of these two,” their mother Carrie Freer said.
An award ceremony took place Aug. 19 at the Chase Park Plaza in St. Louis. Earlier this summer, Godfrey Mayor Mike McCormick declared July 29, 2016, as Taylor and Lily Freer Day after the siblings held their eighth annual Christmas in July, at which the event raised $33,500 for the Riverbend’s Community Christmas. Last year, the event raised $25,000. Christmas in July is a fundraising jump-start event for Community Christmas that provides generously for families in need at Christmastime.
Originally, more than eight years ago, Taylor wanted to give away money she had collected in a bank to charity. But with the help of her family, the idea evolved to what it is today — a fundraiser for Community Christmas. All of the proceeds go toward items, toys and other needs for families who receive Community Christmas giving.
“We try to give back as much as we can,” the girls’ dad, Tim Freer, said.
Christmas in July is a lunch held at Freer Auto Body, the family business in Godfrey, where sloppy Joes, chips and dessert are served by youngsters to the public. Raffle tickets also are sold, contributing to the funds raised. The event raised $2,500 its first year. The girls, their friends, their father, mother and grandparents, Mike and Margaret Freer, all chip in volunteering time to make Christmas in July a success, the girls’ grandmother said.
The family is one of the top supporters of Community Christmas, which is sponsored by the Telegraph and the United Way. The United Way recognized Taylor and Lily as “outstanding community volunteers” in the years since the Freer girls founded Christmas in July.
Visit www.stl.unitedway.org for more information about Community Christmas.
We would like to thank The Telegraph for reprint permission.