JFS Perspectives

Wednesday, January 08, 2020

Community Members Provided Holiday Gifts for More than 500 Individuals in Need

Community Members Provided Holiday Gifts for More than 500 Individuals in Need

Thank you to the many generous individuals, organizations, and corporations that made the holiday season special for hundreds of JFS clients. Donors provided gifts to our Bright Holidays program in several ways:

Adopt-a-Family: JFS staff members from all program areas referred their clients needing holiday assistance to the Family Safety Net department. Donors received stories about the individual’s or family’s circumstances, children’s ages, sizes, and wish list items, and then purchased hand-selected gifts for 233 individuals from 63 households—a 33% increase over last year. About 30 families from our KidSuccess school-based counseling program, many of whom were suffering from terrible illnesses and circumstances, received gifts.

Cedra GoldmanWe had many new corporate and individual donors who adopted families. Thank you to the following companies and individuals for adopting several families and engaging other donors in this program: JEWISHcolorado, Holland & Hart, Kutner Brinen PC, MassMutual, New American Funding, Amanda Alpert, Cedra Goldman, Maggie Shapiro, and Lisa Soicher. Many JFS employees also generously adopted families this year. Thank you to Andrea Stillman, who once again spent many days at JFS organizing the Adopt-a-Family gifts and shopping for extra items.Volunteers helping a girl decorate a cookie 

Secret Shopper Toy Drive: Donors purchased toys and gift cards requested by our clients with children through our Amazon Wish List and Target Registry. Volunteers helped us turn our Board Room into a pop-up toy store. Parents then selected the gifts they wanted. New this year, volunteers staffed a gift-wrapping station and helped kids decorate cookies and write thank-you notes while their parents shopped. A nine-year-old boy who was helping wrap one of his gifts told our volunteers that this would be the first time he would be opening a Christmas gift. We distributed gifts to 208 kids from 69 households through this program. 

Bright Holidays giftsHoliday Helper Program: This program was great for last-minute shoppers! Donors purchased toys or gift cards and dropped them off at JFS. Pantry client families who hadn’t signed up for specific gifts got to choose items right before the holidays when they came to shop in the pantry. Forty-eight children from 20 households received these gifts.

A big thank-you to Lockheed Martin’s Operation Santa Claus program for providing food and toys for 54 individuals from 14 households and to Temple Emanuel Sisterhood for organizing an extensive toy collection from the religious school students.

In total, 543 individuals from 166 households received gifts this year! We couldn't have done it without the outpouring of community support.

Check out the touching blog post by Shelly Hines, Family Safety Net director, about how she was humbly reminded during the end of the year why we do this work.


META DESCRIPTION: Thanks to generous donors, Jewish Family Service of Colorado provided holiday gifts for nearly 550 individuals in need through its Bright Holidays program.