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Family-run charity gives care bags to women in recovery in Anne Arundel County

Posted at 4:30 AM, Dec 17, 2020
and last updated 2020-12-17 19:26:54-05

ANNAPOLIS, Md. — Hunti's Hope Hunters is at it again.

WMAR and Chick-fil-A honored the Chandler family as the Everyday Heroes award winner in March for the work they're doing through their charity Hunti's Hope Hunters.

They started it after losing their nephew and cousin Hunter to substance abuse.

Normally the family would do an in-person ceremony to thank first responders who help people struggling with drug abuse. But COVID-19 forced them to rethink their plans for this year.

They decided to put together care bags for women in recovery. Erica Chandler reached out to Angel Traynor, founder of Serenity Sistas, to coordinate the drop off.

Over the course of several weeks, the Chandlers collected a number of items including gift certificates, snacks, hygiene and pampering products.

"I absolutely have been overwhelmed with the generosity and the giving that we have received this year because we expected it to be much harder," Erica said.

On Sunday, Erica and her daughter Penelope dropped off the care bags to Traynor to give to the women.

Traynor started Serenity Sistas in 2012 as a way to give people leaving treatment an avenue toward improving their lives and learning to live without drugs and alcohol.

She said she was blown away by Penelope and her desire to help others.

"It brought me to tears because here’s this smaller human being, I don’t want to say little girl because she’s way beyond her years, who has come up wanting to help other people and what a gift," Traynor said.

Serenity Sistas helps single women, women with children and men. She said most of the recipients of the gift bags were moms and the small gesture of kindness made a huge difference in their lives.

"It made it worth doing what I do because I got to go in and see these women who are just so grateful to have some help at Christmas."

The Chandlers also collected toys to give to the children who are living with their moms while they are in the recovery homes.