On Saturday, April 29th, the Christ Child Society of Akron will celebrate its 60th year of serving the needs ofAkron area children and their families with a gala dinner at the Fairlawn Country Club.Current and past members, family, and friends will gather from far and near to enjoy an evening of friendship and recognition of the organization’s many achievements in providing material support to children in need and families in crisis.The highlight of the evening will be a special trip down memory lane, with a video presentation of Christ Child activities since the group’s local founding in 1957.In recognition of this milestone and the organization’s important contributions to the community, Akron City Council recently declared April 29th "Christ Child Society of Akron Day." The Christ Child Society is a national, all volunteer service organization, founded in 1887 by Mary Virginia Merrick in Washington, DC.Confined to a wheelchair as the result of a spinal injury in her teens, Miss Merrick chose to devote her life to the care of her "little ones," those children born into families without resources to provide for their needs.From its earliest days, the Christ Child Society provided layettes to infants, toys to children who otherwise would receive no Christmas gifts, and opportunities for city children to enjoy country air and recreation.For her years of dedicated service to children, Miss Merrick was formally recognized as a Servant of God by the Catholic Church in 2003. Under Miss Merrick’s leadership, Christ Child Society chapters sprang up in various cities across the country.Today, there are 44 local chapters in 20 states, each dedicated to providing personal service and basic support to children and their families.Members of the Christ Child Society of Akron donate their time and resources to serve area children through a variety of service projects.Among the Society’s best known local projects are purchasing, packing, and distribution of clothing and supplies for babies and school-aged children through area hospitals and schools; providing emergency supplies to children in crisis who have been forced from their homes due to abuse, neglect, or family emergency; and support and educational services to young mothers in conjunction with the First Glance program. All Christ Child projects are carried out exclusively by volunteers and are funded with private donations, grants, and through various fundraising events throughout the year.The two biggest events are Cheers for a Child, usually held in September, and the Red Wagon Luncheon and Artisan Fair that is held annually in November.For more information about the Christ Child Society of Akron, its programs, fundraisers, or to get involved, visit the Society’s website at https://sites.google.com/christchildsocietyakron.org.