What a season! We have had a great Christmas Season of outreach. The stats are amazing, and the feedback has been awesome. Most of us who have served have had the opportunity to hear many thanks yous and the stories of people who have been touched by our kindness. Personally it’s been a season where I’ve seen the leading and guiding of the Holy Spirit most days. I’ve noticed I’ve shown up at just the right time for the right person, or sensing I need to be somewhere, then arrive and discover why I needed to be there. It’s been interesting.
Here are some stats and notes…
5 Elementary schools were served: Kettering Greenmont Elementary, Kettering JFK Elementary, Fairborn Wright Kindergarten, Fairborn Elementary and Beavercreek Parkwood Elementary.
The school counselors of each school submitted the names of the children who were in need. They filled out a form giving sizes, ages, and their wish list for Christmas presents. 120 families were then adopted by the people of the Vineyard from the 5 schools. Once adopted, the families shopped, then delivered the gifts to our main locations for sorting and putting into large gift bags with family names and codes. Each school then received the different color and coded bags of clothing and gifts.
4 Elementary schools also received non-decrectionatory gift of $500 to help the counselors to help kids in need, thanks to James Capital INC..
Every school also received tickets to give the the next layer of children in need, to visit out Making Christmas Dreams Come True Free Store. From Wednesday to Friday we opened the store in the evenings and during the day on Saturday. Each gender / age group had tables with age appropriate presents. The parents / guardians then chose 2 gifts per child and a few items of clothing. Each parent / guardian was greeted by a guide who helped carry the presents, listened and prayed for the family. The presents given were purchased donated and by the people of the Vineyard.
The kids had fun in a separate Kidzone space with bouncy castle, and crafts.
Wrap It up!
12 days at the mall flew by. Several great conversations and people telling stories how they or a family member had been touched by our kindness over the months and years.
One man, “Your turkey that you gave to my daughter on Thanksgiving week was more then kind, It was significant and awesome. It made such a difference for her and all the other people in the apartment complex.”
Our location was fantastic. 40 feet of window space and a bathroom located in the store.