June 20, 2024

Final yr, Chilliwack Neighborhood Companies offered 578 meals hampers, reaching 1,235 youngsters.

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Annually, Chilliwack Neighborhood Companies tries to make sure that every household that registers with its Christmas Share Program has a vacation meal, toys — and pyjamas.

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“One of many issues we be sure that we do is that each household will get a sport or one thing they will do collectively,” mentioned Shirley Triemstra, fundraising coordinator for this system, “and that each youngster will get new pyjamas.”

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The toys, meals and sleepwear are a part of the group’s Christmas Share Program. It companions with the Salvation Military, which offers the meals whereas Chilliwack Neighborhood Companies takes care of the toys and presents.

The toys are donated via native toy drives and different initiatives.

“We’ve got so many toy drives,” Triemstra mentioned. “One in all them, the Rotary CATT (Chilliwack Athletes for Toys and Turkeys) volleyball match, collected over 200 toys and $2,000 value of present certificates and a $28,000 cheque.”

Regardless of the toy drives don’t cowl, the Empty Stocking Fund does. Now in its 104th yr, the fund is powered by readers of The Province. Donations go to 26 Christmas bureaus and companies within the Decrease Mainland to assist needy households.

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Chilliwack Neighborhood Companies typically makes use of its ESF funds for presents for teenagers.

“As a result of that’s the place we at all times have a little bit of an issue,” Triemstra mentioned. “We all know teenagers, proper? They don’t need toys. We give them present playing cards. We’ll give them toiletries.”

And PJs.

The pyjamas come from Outdated Navy.

“They’ve been excellent to us, and we’ve been capable of get them at an excellent value. I’ll get them wherever that they’re on sale. Carter’s is one other place that generally will give me a very nice deal. I simply store round,” she mentioned.

Final yr, Chilliwack Neighborhood Companies offered 578 meals hampers, reaching 1,235 youngsters.

“We settle for anyone who’s struggling. We’re ready. We’ll do no matter it takes to ensure that all people has an ideal Christmas,” Triemstra mentioned.

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The Salvation Military, which offers meals and grocery certificates, had reported a 30 per cent improve in shoppers as of late November over final yr.

“We’re undoubtedly anticipating extra,” she mentioned. “I don’t know if it will likely be as a lot as 30 per cent simply because not all households want toys. We’re ready for a 20 per cent uptake.”

Chilliwack Neighborhood Companies schedules the toy pickup for in the future.

“Households are scheduled in half-hour increments. It’s simply enjoyable to see all people and we’ve received nice individuals working right here, one coordinator and the remainder is all volunteers. That’s one other huge a part of it. We couldn’t do it with out our volunteers,” Triemstra mentioned.

Serving to out locally right now of yr is so pleasing that the volunteer positions replenish shortly.

“We even see households coming in and dealing collectively for a few hours,” she mentioned.

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