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Social Work Club adopts family for Holidays

By Samantha Sullivan
On December 10, 2013

  • Three choirs, the Southeastern Choir, the Northshore Choral Soceity and the Women’s Chorale and Concert Choir, came together at the First Baptist Church to spread the Christmas spirit. Sara Stanley

When the weather gets chilly and toy advertisements commandeer the television, it can only mean one thing: Christmas is here. Decorations illuminate the night sky while carolers venture door-to-door bringing holiday cheer.
Unfortunately, Christmas time also brings upon stress to those who families who already struggle month to month to make do. Sadly enough, some families even do without a single present underneath a tree. To the average adult, Christmas is more than presents, but to a child, it is what makes Christmas so special.
This year the Social Work Club paired with the Salvation Army's Angel Tree program and chose to adopt a family of five. Each year the Salvation Army raises funds in order to provide Christmas to needy families. According to the Salvation Army's website, "the 'miracle' of Christmas is repeated over and over again through the joy of caring and sharing. The traditional red kettle is an integral part of the Christmas scene, with millions of dollars donated each year to aid needy families, seniors, and the homeless." Because of these donations, Christmas dinners, clothing and toys are distributed to numerous families through donations and financial assistance.
The families are chosen by the Salvation Army based on their need.
"We do not have the opportunity to select the family. The only request you can make is the size of the family," said Social Work Club vice-president and fundraiser coordinator Holly Heil.
The Salvation Army gathers information such as first names, ages, sizes and wish lists for the family. The family name, however, remains anonymous.
The Social Work Club chose to adopt a family of five this year. The children adopted were a four-year-old boy named Jermaine, a three-year-old boy named Micah and a three-year-old girl named Jamyia. Items were purchased for each child.
"Each child had a list of necessary items and one wish. All of the children within the family asked for a bike. Members of the social club purchased bikes for each child and assembled them. The necessary items for each child included a coat, pants, a shirt and shoes. Additional items that the club decided to purchase included socks, hats, gloves, and toys," said Heil.  
Although the parents did not make a request for themselves this Christmas, the Social Work Club also purchased the parents a gift basket.
This was their first year adopting a family, so they decided to adopt just one.
"We have had great support, and next year we will be adopting more than one family," said Heil. "We hope this becomes a tradition each fall semester for the Social Work Club. As the coordinator for this fundraiser, it was amazing to see the generosity and communal effort of everyone involved in the social work club. It has truly been a beautiful experience to see the generosity and efforts."

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