Published December 13, 2016 03:39
“Having a Christmas hamper means our kids can have a normal Christmas. We really struggled (financially) this year and we don’t know what we would have done without the Adopt-A-Family Program.” – Hamper recipient
Okanagan Boys and Girls Clubs (OBGC) are ready to make memories this holiday season. For the third year in a row, Clubs are running the Adopt a Family Christmas Hamper program. The program gives families and youth in need the chance to have a Christmas complete with food and a few presents.
This may not seem like a monumental gift, but for families struggling financially, the costs of Christmas can be stressful. “Food security is a major issue in our valley,” said Infant Development Program Coordinator Jennifer Fox. “Many parents struggle to do their best for their children, but can find themselves feeling helpless when their best is not enough.”
The Penticton Club is supporting 23 families this year. These families are located in Summerland, Penticton, and Keremeos. “My family will have memories of a good Christmas. I want my son to think everything is okay and that we are not struggling,” said one parent.
The Oliver/Osoyoos Club is supporting 25 families and two young people this year. The young people are living independently with support through the Youth Agreement Program. This program generally covers essential expenses, leaving many young people with a highly restricted budget. The hampers these young people receive will contribute to their health and well-being.
Central Okanagan Clubs are aiding 37 families. 18 of those families are being supported by Adopters in the community and 15 are being supported by the Central Okanagan Community Food Bank. Our own Armstrong Food Bank estimated that they will be helping 120-125 families this holiday season.
“We seek to help every family that we know is in need. Our community partners have the resources to help when we have more families than sponsors,” says OBGC CEO Diane Entwistle. We are extremely grateful for the community partners who have contributed to the program. Community partners directly contribute to the happy holiday memories of the families and youth we help.