In 2014, I started a Christmas fundraiser to help working families who could not afford to buy Christmas gifts for their children. This started because there was a year when I myself struggled horribly and had it not been for the help of some very dear friends, my own children would have had a very bleak Christmas. Friends however came together, and they worked their magic to make sure my children never even had to face the fact that their single parent was struggling beyond belief.
I made a promise to myself that Christmas that I was going to pay it forward as soon as I got my financial affairs in order, and by the next Christmas, I was able to do that.
The first year, I started with just a few families and with the help of friends, we kept the Spirit of Christmas alive by providing gifts for all the children as well as new clothes and coats, shoes and even pajamas and something small for the parents. One of the families even received a new television because they had to sell theirs to pay their electric bill.
The next few years, the number of families increased, and I also decided to start providing not only the gifts and clothing, but also Thanksgiving and Christmas dinner for each family.
The families are chosen each year by referrals from people that I know who know a family in need. They must be local as I deliver everything in person. I also meet with the family to go over their income, bills and to make sure they do not receive help from programs like the Angel Tree or Toys for Tots. A big condition of helping them is that one or both parents must have a job.
I try to help families who are working hard but just cannot afford Christmas just as I was when I needed help from my own friends. The last two years, I chose a few too many families and trust me when I say, I cut it close when trying to ensure everyone got what they needed!
This year, I narrowed the list down to five families only. I wish more could be helped but it just is not possible.
For those who are familiar with the Christmas fundraiser, I do hope you will help again this year!
Here are the families that have been chosen and the wish lists and sizes of the children!
Two parents and three children
Child 1-Boy- Age 12-Clothing Size 12 Husky Boys Shirts and Pants- Size 7 shoes
Wish List: Basketball-Football-New BMX Bicycle
Child 2– Boy- Age 15-Clothing size Men’s medium shirts-28 pants-Size 11 men’s shoes
Wish List: Xbox gift card or Walmart gift card-Hoodies
hild 3– Girl- Age 9-Clothing size 10 girls’ shirt and pants- Size 13 girls’ shoes Wish List- Shopkins-Calico Critters-My Little Pony
Mom-Size 2XL Large Women’s pajamas
Dad-Size 3XL Men’s Pajamas
Mom and two children
Child 1-Girl- Age 5-Clothing Size girls’ size 4-5 shirt/pants and Shoes size 7 girls Wish List: Disney Princess dolls-hair bows (loves big bows) and pretend cooking toys
Child 2-Girl- Age 7-Clothing size Girls 8 shirts and pants and Shoes size 9 girls
Wish List: Art supplies, canvas, acrylic paint, markers, paintbrushes
Mom- Size Medium pajamas
FAMILY THREE Dad and Mom and two children Child 1- Boy- Age 16-Clothing Size- Men’s Large shirts, size 32/30 pants and Men’s shoes size 13 Wish List-PlayStation Gaming System and game, Gift card Child 2-Girl- Age 13- Size 3 women’s jeans-size Small women’s shirts-Size 6 women’s shoes Wish List: Skinny jeans, crop top shirts, lip gloss, hair ties, art supplies Mom-Size small women’s pajamas Dad-Size XL men’s pajamas
Mom and four children
Child 1- Boy- Age 17- Men’s 2XL Shirts, XL Sweatpants- Men’s shoes size 14
Wish List- Clothing and hoodies
Child 2- Boy- Age 7- Girls size 8 Clothing and Size 7 girls’ shoes
Wish list- barbie dolls, teddy bears, unicorns, coloring books and crayons and markers
Child 3- Girl- Age 14- Size 2 women’s jeans, size medium women’s shirts, Size 7 women’s shoes
Wish List: Karaoke machine, tv for her room, laptop for school
Child 4-Girl- Age 16- Size 3 women’s jeans, size medium women’s shirts, Size 7 women’s shoes
Wish List: Starbucks gift cards, earrings, makeup kits, lotions
Mom– Size 3XL women’s pajamas
Grandmother and two children
Child 1- Girl- Age 11-Size 1 women’s jeans- Size small women’s shirts-Size 6.5 women’s shoes Wish List: makeup kits, nail art set, jewelry making kits, pedicure/manicure gift card
Child 2- Boy- Age 13-Size 14 boys’ pants- Size 14 or Large Boys shirt- Size 8 men’s shoes
Wish list: Skateboard, Keyboard, Headphones or earbuds, Camera
Grandmother: Size Large women’s pajamas
GROCERIES AND CLEANING SUPPLIES
We also need groceries for the Thanksgiving and Christmas meals and cleaning supplies!
If you can help with groceries or with gift cards to purchase groceries, that would be wonderful!
Here is the grocery list:
25 cans green beans
30 boxes stuffing mix
25 cans corn 10 cans yams
5 pecan pies
5 pumpkin pies
5 tubs cool whip
10 packages dinner rolls
5 tubs butter
10 gallons milk
5 Aluminum roasting pans
5 rolls aluminum foil 5 boxes tea bags
5 bags sugar
10 dozen donuts for breakfast
5 gallons orange juice
5 packages of turkey gravy
10 cases of bottled water
5 packs of paper towels
5 big bottles laundry detergent
5 bottles dish soap
5 packs of sponges
5 boxes of Hefty trash bags
10 bottles shampoo
10 bottles conditioner
5 large packs of bath soap (Dove, Coast or Ivory)
5 large packs of toilet paper
5 laundry baskets (We pack the cleaning supplies inside the baskets)
All gifts, cash donations and gift cards need to be turned in by or before November 30 to ensure everything is purchased and can be delivered to the families prior to Christmas break so the parents can get everything hidden from the children before Christmas.
We need 13 stockings and small toys and candy to fill them!
Thank you to everyone who helps every year and to those who are new to this and will help this year!
Wishing you and yours a very happy holiday season!