Once again we will host a shopping trip for the foster children at Christian Care Agency (They work with families and children of all denominations). Most of these children are foster children due to being placed by Child Protective Services for various reasons since parents may be in jail, on drugs, abusive or negligent. They range in age from 4 yrs old to teens. Some have been in Foster Care a short time, while others have spent most of their lives there, being moved from one foster home to another. Some have never had a Christmas tree, presents, or a special meal and have been split from their siblings. The foster parents are truly special people, sacrificing so much to help these children. Many take on more than one, in addition to their own children. They get very little financial aid, and most do it for unselfish reasons. This time of year is hard for them, in addition to the fact the economy has hit them hard. Without our help many go without presents or a special meal.
These children will change your life!! This is a chance for you, your family, your business/ org. to get involved financially, hands on, or both. Volunteers are NEVER the same after going once. Some have gone every year since 1995. They see the difference they make, not because of the presents, but because the children see, first hand, how many people care about them, when many feel close to giving up hope during this time of year. You WILL make a difference whether you volunteer your time, your money or both.
**On Saturday, we will take a bus load (or two) of the foster children shopping. We will meet together at 6:30 – 6:45am and board our bus(s) at Albertson’s parking lot at Desert Ridge, and MUST leave at 7am sharp. The bus(s) drive us to pick up the children from the agency parking lot. Each volunteer is assigned a child who will ride with them on the bus to Walmart. (usually the children are quiet on way to store.)**
Each volunteer will help their child shop. Some children have lists of presents and some just look around to find gifts. Each child has an amount of $125. in which to pick out presents for themselves or others. (It is hard to get some to spend on themselves, they want to buy for foster siblings, foster parents, or others- sometimes after only knowing them a week or so…they are so giving. You help them find the items and keep track of how much they have spent!) We then form lines together at cash register, and the fun begins as we all check out together. By then, you have fallen in love with your child, and everyone is talking, laughing and the kids are excited.
We load back on the bus and head to the agency where their parents pick them up. We sing songs, eat cookies, and it is so special to see the joy on their faces. We unload, say a prayer together in a prayer circle and provide each child with a surprise bag for themselves that contains goodies and a special present. They love it! We say our tearful goodbyes and normally get back to Albertson’s around 10-10:30am.
This year we also want to provide $50 grocery store gift card for each family to shop for groceries. We did this last year and they were much needed and very thankful. We also want to supply them with gift wrap paper and tape, since some of the children sometimes try and buy this out of their shopping money. Plus this year Apostle Creations will be providing bracelets and keychains the children can give their foster parents so that they do not have to use their money to try and buy gifts for the parents.
Please join us by volunteering, and/or donating and praying. We started out taking only 7-8 children, now we take as many as 37. Depending on your donations. We need your support. This is all done through donations! Feel free to send this on to others!!!!! If you want to volunteer sign up now since we can only take so many.
Cost breakdown (approx):
Bus Transportation $500-600 per bus
Bibles for each child $4 each
Shopping Amount $125 per child
Goodies for each child $10.
Gift bags for each child $2. each
Gift cards $50. per family
Gift Wrapping and tape per child $7 Presents for children to their parents: $20. per family
Be sure if you volunteer you prepare your hearts…you will love these children and experience something you can not otherwise by just dropping off presents for children or donating food for a food pantry. (Both of which are still very important) But these children will touch your heart. Register at SaveAChristmas.com.