There are many families at this time of year who need a little extra help to have a memorable and positive holiday season — and the Salvation Army is doing what it can with its Adopt-A-Family program.
Unfortunately, there are still about 10 families the Salvation Army is hoping to pair up with donors.
“People struggle to pay their regular bills on a monthly basis,” said Capt. Kelly Fifield, core officer at Salvation Army Kamloops, noting the additional costs associated with the holiday season can create a struggle.
“Our hope and our goal in this program is to be able to support them with Christmas so it doesn’t have to be a burden on them.”
Families have applied to the Salvation Army to receive a Christmas hamper — either a food hamper providing dinner for singles and couples or a hamper with food and gifts for a family with children.
Parents have included a wish list for their children so donors know what types of gifts to consider.
Meals are provided through a $60 gift card to the family’s preferred grocery store. Fifield explained that because of cultural and religious dietary requirements, gift cards are a better choice than simply buying ingredients for Christmas dinner.
She also noted that not everyone has access to a deep freeze to store a turkey until it’s time to be prepared.
Those donating gifts for the children of these families are asked to keep the value of presents to a maximum of $125 per child. Fifield recommends purchasing a primary gift and a smaller secondary gift, with perhaps a sweater or another clothing item added to the list.
Donors are asked to not wrap gifts.
“It allows the parents to wrap the gift,” she said, which allows moms and dads to feel more connected to the experience and know in advance what their children will be receiving on Christmas morning.
Fifield said the limit on gift purchases is implemented to ensure money is most effectively spread through the community and acts as a reminder that Christmas is about more than excess.
“Christmas is about family,” she said. “Christmas is about coming together and it’s a wonderful thing when there can be a couple of gifts under the tree on Christmas morning.”
Those wishing to sign up and adopt a family can call Tracey at the Salvation Army at 250-554-1611, extension 200.