Irishtown teen made Christmas brighter for others

Gary Kean
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For Christmas this year, Amber Murrin of Irishtown asked her family to give her toys she could donate to the Transition House.

CORNER BROOK — After watching a television show about someone donating toys to kids, Amber Murrin knew exactly what she wanted for Christmas.

She told her parents and all of her relatives to give her toys that she could then donate to children who might go without this Christmas.

On Christmas Eve, the 14-year-old from Irishtown and her parents, Corrina and Shannon Murrin, loaded up the family pickup truck and delivered a bunch of toys to the Transition House in Corner Brook.

“I was thinking of giving them to the Janeway (Children’s Hospital in St. John’s) at first,” said the charitable teenager.

“Then, I thought about how difficult it would be to get the toys out there. So then I started looking in Corner Brook and found Transition House.”

Among the items donated were Barbie dolls, teddy bears, a stroller for children learning to walk and a Dairy Queen Blizzard maker.

Her mom said the entire family has been supportive of Amber’s gesture. She expected more toys from other relatives to arrive after the family’s big delivery on Christmas Eve, so more trips may be needed after Christmas.

“We’ll make sure it all gets there,” said Corrina.

Amber’s parents were quite proud of her when she told them what she wanted to do to make this a special Christmas for them and the families they have touched.

“We were really impressed that she would actually give up her gifts,” said her mom. “She was adamant about calling all her aunts and uncles and telling them she didn’t want and didn’t need anything for Christmas and wanted gifts that she could give away.”

Amber did get one present to open on Christmas Day, noted her mother: a luggage set for a trip to Montreal that Amber is planning to take in May.

Valerie Simms-Anderson, executive director of Transition House, said it is obvious Amber is a young person who is sensitive to what happens in the world around her. The Christmas period, she noted, is the time of year when the shelter for abused women and their children tends to see an increase in the number of women seeking out Transition House’s services.

That means a less than festive holiday season for some families.

“We want them to have Christmas gifts like everybody else does, so when people donate like Amber is doing, then it means we actually have Christmas gifts to give to the women and the children,” said Simms-Anderson.

The toys donated by Amber will be distributed to kids spending Christmas either at the shelter or at second-stage housing for women and children trying to distance themselves from unstable relationships.

Organizations: Transition House, Janeway

Geographic location: CORNER BROOK, Montreal

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Recent comments

  • Joan
    December 29, 2012 - 09:21

    Way to go Amber! Your mom and dad have raised a wonderful young lady and you are an inspirational to all.

  • jessica woods
    December 29, 2012 - 04:49

    WOW. When people say our young people are rude, arrogant, and wanting everything they can get their hands on, they fail to realize that many of them are like this young women and wanting to help, but often times don't know how. Way to go Amber!

  • star
    December 28, 2012 - 17:46

    you will certinally have a place in heaven. Your parents have raised a fine young woman.

  • Natalie
    December 28, 2012 - 15:55

    I'm sure Amber has had the best Christmas ever, as she has captured the true essence of to others. What an awesome gesture. Kudos to her parents for raising such a fine young lady.

  • Sherry Mullins
    December 28, 2012 - 14:25

    What a wonderful heart you have.We are so proud of you sweetie..

  • Kayla
    December 28, 2012 - 13:57

    Way to go sweetie! Your making some child happy on Christmas morning! you should be very proud of yourself!!

  • Lorraine G.
    December 28, 2012 - 13:02

    I love reading The Western Star. I'm living in Calgary but I am from Corner Brook. So proud of this young lady for doing what she has done. I applaud you Amber and your family. You are a great example of what we should all strive to be.

  • DarleneGillingham
    December 28, 2012 - 12:45

    amber we all are very proud of you.

  • Norma Park
    December 28, 2012 - 11:46

    What a kind thing to do Amber! Certainly the king of generous and sensitive heart that will take you many, many places! You clearly know the true meaning of Christmas! Merry Christmas to you...and enjoy your voyage à Montréal!

  • Duane
    December 28, 2012 - 11:00

    Kudos to Amber, very special person to think of others in this day and age! We need to see more stories like this in the news instead of all the horror going on in the world.

  • Foggy Goggle
    December 28, 2012 - 09:36

    Bravo for sharing this heart-warming story with your readers! A pat on the back to Amber's parents for doing such a wonderful job of cultivating thoughtfulness and appreciation in their young teenaged-daughter. By instilling these values, Amber is paying it forward by having such a positive impact on the lives of others. Her generosity and selflessness have touched not only those less fortunate but it has spread amongst her family and relatives. Amber has captured the true essence of Christmas!

  • Margaret
    December 28, 2012 - 08:31

    Great story! Great Christmas spirit demonstrated by this young lady and her family. It made me feel better just reading it.

  • pete
    December 28, 2012 - 08:23

    Well done Amber. You are setting a wonderful example for other people and hopefully they will follow your lead. Merry Christmas and Happy New Year.

  • Merry Christmas
    December 28, 2012 - 08:16

    God love this young lady! Most teenagers her age are all about "gimme gimme". It's such an amazing thing to see this kind of goodness in this world. I hope she and her family had the Merriest Christmas Ever and a most prosperous, happy, healthy New Year! And Thank You, Western Star, for printing such a story. It's so refreshing to read something positive.

    • corena
      December 28, 2012 - 20:18

      Amber you have a big heart, as for many of us have families in that situation..The families that you have made their Christmas better will always remember you..God Bless you and many big hugs and kisses goes your way and your family also..I am from Stephenville ,NL but live in Nova Scotia now..It is nice to know that us Newfies still help out each other.