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Mother-daughter renew Sock It to Me campaign

LaVencia Gaines, from left, Yolanda Edwards, William Rogers and Al-Dreco Jones, front, took part in a Sock It To Me membership drive last fall. (Special Photo)

LaVencia Gaines, from left, Yolanda Edwards, William Rogers and Al-Dreco Jones, front, took part in a Sock It To Me membership drive last fall. (Special Photo)

McDONOUGH — A mother and her daughter are renewing their efforts to provide fresh new socks to hospital-bound children and assisted living seniors throughout metro Atlanta.

Yolanda Edwards and her daughter LaVencia Gaines, 14, started their work in late 2008, providing pairs of socks to children who were hold up in the hospital for the holidays.

The McDonough family delivered to three Children’s Healthcare of Atlanta hospitals but had hundreds more left over.

Edwards said she prayed and reflected on what to do with those socks when it hit her.

“We’re going to sock-it to seniors on Saturdays,” she said. “Nursing homes need socks too.”

Thus, the “Sock It to Me” campaign was born.

Edwards estimates she and Gaines have collected, off and on, more than 10,000 pairs of socks since they began the campaign.

Her daughter is a freshman at Luella High School and will lead the effort to get others to participate so that they can improve upon those numbers and affect more people.

“Everyone is encouraged to join,” said Edwards. “The more people, the merrier.”

Volunteers are wanted in Henry and Clayton counties and even in Atlanta, where half the socks are delivered to the area’s children’s hospitals.

She said in order to become a member of Sock It to Me, a person must donate their age in socks. For example, a 12-year-old would donate a dozen pairs of socks to gain membership to the organization but a 23-year-old would donate 23 pairs.

Last fall, they recruited entertainers William “DJ Big Wil” Rogers and Al’Dreco “King Roscoe” Jones to help with getting the word out.

The mother-daughter team plans to hold a membership drive in McDonough this weekend and next. They will set up near the Dollar Tree at 123 Willow Lane, next to the McDonough Walmart Supercenter at I-75 Exit 218, from 10 a.m. until 8 p.m., Saturday and Aug. 31.

Edwards said individuals can easily donate or gain membership by purchasing new socks at either retailer.

“We really want to get the ‘Elite 100 Sockiteers,’ that’s what we’re calling our first 100 members,” she said. “This is an opportunity for parents to give their children something positive to do. We want to empower kids to do great things in our community. And we don’t ask for money, we just collect socks.”

The socks must be new — bound or in packaging. The organization encourages donations of colorful socks for infants and children and thick white socks for seniors.

Edwards said hospitals request brightly-colored socks for their young patients while nursing homes prefer warm, comfortable socks for senior residents.

Residents wanting to get involved can visit www.sockittomenow.org.