MOBILE, Ala. (WKRG) — When we think about gift-giving for the holidays, most people primarily think about the children but this year, a family charity is making sure the elderly aren’t left out.

Saturday, Addie Mae Jackson 4Hope hosted a fundraiser to raise money to buy Christmas presents for senior citizens, in memory of a loved one.

In 2018, the Jackson family established a charity in honor of Addie Mae Jackson, a family member who passed away from a rare small intestine cancer.

“Initially the chairty started out of a bad place, a place of grief and sorrow after my mom passed,” said Sharon Jackson, Addie Mae’s daughter and Founder of the charity. “I heard my mom’s voice say get up and do something and so we got up to do this.”

This year is their first Christmas Bazaar fundraiser. They hosted a carnival-like event with games, rides, treats and prizes at Ms. Addie Mae’s church to raise money to make sure that no senior at the Prichard Community Center, where Addie Mae Jackson once attended, is without a Christmas gift this holiday.

Sharon said this fundraiser is a way to have fun, eat good but also bring joy and hope to seniors and remind them to live life to the fullest.

“The seniors are often forgotten, and we know from our own mom how she would remember all of the seniors in our family, in the church and in the community so we just wanted to continue that tradition,” said Sharon. “The seniors are the reason we’re here, the children are our future but the seniors are our foundation.”

Family friends and former church members of Ms. Addie Mae said this is all about continuing who she was and they believe she would be so proud to see this kind of event in her honor.

“She was another mother to me, and I speak highly of her because she was such a beautiful person, her character was great,” said Sharon Barker Anderson. “Anything that we needed as a family growing up as children, she was there… she was right there.” 

Beyond continuing the Christmas Bazaar, Addie Mae Jackson 4Hope looks forward to hosting a “Strut 4Hope Day” in Prichard on March 11.

“If I can do a fraction of what she did in life, just to make a difference in someone else’s life…then our living is not in vain,” said Sharon.

If you missed the fundraiser but still want to donate to Addie Mae Jackson 4Hope charity, click here.