Building Doll Houses for Needy Children

Annabelle got her first ever doll house, thanks to the Alpine Cabinet Co., in Colorado
Annabelle got her first ever doll house, thanks to the Alpine Cabinet Co., in Colorado.

Home-building woes have cost jobs. Alpine Cabinet Co., in Colorado went from 55 workers to about 40.

Until Bill Chinn, who helps run this family business, decided - no more letting people go.

"Our people are loyal to us, and we're going to be loyal to them," Chinn said.

Yet, a factory needs to produce. For more than four decades, they've been building cabinets for full size kitchens. But this year, they decided to make something smaller in size, but bigger in heart, as CBS News correspondent Barry Petersen reports.

Alpine Cabinet Company
Project Self Sufficiency

It was Chinn's idea. When production slowed down he wanted to keep the factory running; so he had workers turn out 70 doll houses in three days. The doll houses were given away to those short of money: a little girl's perfect Christmas surprise.

"They're going to get a dream," Chinn said.

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They deliver their treasures to places like Project Self Sufficiency that helps single parents. That's where seven-year-old Katie got one.

"It has roses, and it's pink," she said. "I love the colors on it!"

She and a friend were soon setting up house.

"Look at how happy they are," Chinn said.

At one delivery, Bill's brother, Scott, helped Annabelle set up her first ever doll house.

Scott said he didn't mind being a grown up, and playing dolls. "It feels pretty good," he said. "It doesn't feel too bad."

There's a housing boom in this small corner of Colorado. Where giving can mean getting back what no money can buy - a child's delight.

The company is back to making cabinets but says that its efforts were so well received this Christmas - they want something for boys next year. So they are already planning on making garages and barns.