December 9, 2019
Boulder County Holiday Giving Programs in Need of Donations
Boulder County holiday giving programs offer many opportunities to help low-income families and children celebrate and enjoy the holidays.
Boulder County, Colo. - Boulder County’s community holiday giving programs are in full swing, seeking donations to help ensure as many children and families as possible can share in the joy of the season this year. The Boulder County Department of Housing and Human Services (BCDHHS) offers four options for anyone who wants to help.
“We serve about 90,000 Boulder County residents each year -one out of every four of us- with a range of supports including housing, health coverage, food assistance, child care, and much more,” said Frank Alexander, BCDHHS Director. “The need for help in our community may not always be easy to see, but it is significant, and the holidays are a good time for all of us to help our struggling neighbors feel fully supported and connected.”
"These four programs are a real reflection of the generosity of our community,” said Board of County Commissioners Chair Elise Jones. “The people who live here care deeply about their neighbors in need, and these programs provide a great opportunity to turn that into real support for struggling families and caregivers, so they can give their children or an older adult in their care a holiday season to remember.”
Family to Family (F2F) Holiday Program
The Family to Family (F2F) Holiday Program is seeking donations to help parents and caregivers give gifts to their children and others in need. Now in its 45th year, F2F serves the most vulnerable financially struggling families and individuals in the Child Protection, Foster Care, Adolescent and Adult Protection (later life and disabled adults) and basic needs programs.
Family to Family provides donated gift cards for parents and caregivers to shop for and choose the presents themselves. This approach reflects BCDHHS’ focus on empowering people and strengthening families through providing supports so they can make the decisions that affect their lives.
In 2018, Family to Family served 416 families with gift cards averaging $50 per person. The program is supported by both individual and corporate donors, with gifts large and small. In 2018, 35 corporate donors made contributions, and many individual donors continued years- or even decades-long traditions of giving to the program.
“This gift is a blessing to me and my children,” said a 2018 Family to Family gift recipient. “This has changed our lives and helped us to have hope during the holiday season. Thank you for helping us.”
“Hope is what this program is about,” said Deborah Ramirez, BCDHHS Volunteer Office Program Coordinator. “It is amazing to see the difference these supports can make for parents who are having a hard time just making ends meet. For them, it means everything to see the happiness on their children’s faces and know that they have hope for the future.”
For some parents and caregivers, presents purchased through Family to Family gift cards are the only ones they’re able to give their children for the holidays.
“My deepest gratitude could not express the thanks and love I feel,” wrote a parent who received gift cards through the Family to Family Program in 2018. “My family has been having a tough year and I could not have provided a Christmas for my children without you.”
Giving through the Family to Family Program is easy. Online donations can be made at www.BoulderCountyFamilyToFamily.org. Additional information is also available there or by contacting Debbie Ramirez at 303-441-1430 or firstname.lastname@example.org.
BCDHHS Senior Services Program
The BCDHHS Senior Services Program seeks donations of gift cards to local grocery stores or discount retail stores to help offset the costs of medications and high medical expenses. The program provides supports for older adults who are tenants in permanently-affordable homes. Low- and fixed-income seniors often face the reality of having to choose between covering medical expenses and buying groceries or meeting other basic needs. Gifts given through this program go a long way toward helping them make ends meet during the holidays. To make a donation, contact Kris Durso at 303-519-7152 or email@example.com.
Family Self-Sufficiency’s Holiday Gift Sponsor Program
Other holiday gift-giving opportunities include Family Self-Sufficiency’s Holiday Gift Sponsor Program, which serves Boulder County families in the Family Self-Sufficiency (FSS) program who are working to gain education and skills to help them achieve higher-wage jobs and better living situations for their families. Donors are invited to give a cash donation or gift cards to help with groceries and basic household needs. In 2018, the FSS Holiday Gift Program helped 92 FSS families in Boulder County, including 170 children and 102 parents, enjoy the holidays. To sponsor or make a donation for an FSS family, contact Katie Frye at 303-441-3923 or firstname.lastname@example.org.
Casa de la Esperanza Learning Center
The Casa de la Esperanza Learning Center is seeking donations of school supplies, winter clothing, grocery gift cards, and presents for families of seasonal workers employed in the local dairies, farms, and greenhouses. Casa de la Esperanza in Longmont provides academic support and enrichment opportunities for these families, and as the growing season comes to a close in the cold months just before the holidays, these families face deeper economic difficulties and must endure winter on a very tight budget. To help, contact Vanessa Arritola at 303-678-6220 or email@example.com.