As we celebrate holiday festivities with friends and family, it’s important to remember the members of our community who may be in need.
“We have more than 500 Mason students whose families are facing economic hardship,” Mason City Schools Public Information Officer, Tracey Carson, tells us.
Many local organizations make donating easy by holding heartfelt donation drive events and opportunities during the holiday season. We spoke with a few local organizations that have programs in place to help our community during the holidays and throughout the year.
Mason Cares, of Mason City Schools, will be holding their annual toy drive in partnership with Joshua’s Place and LOVElikeJJ again this year.
“Joshua's Place will be providing gift cards for students in grades 7-12 and LOVElikeJJ will provide gifts and wrapping paper for students in preschool through sixth grade,” Tracey explains.
Crossroads Church also holds an annual toy drive. Participants pick up gift tags from the church with a child's name and QR code with instructions to purchase and send them back through online shopping.
“More than 2,000 Christmas gifts will be received by children in Mason thanks to the generosity of the Crossroads community,” Erin Caproni, director of public relations for Crossroads Church shares.
Those interested in participating can sign up to help sort and distribute gifts at Crossroads.net.
The Mason and Deerfield Chamber will hold their annual JingleFest on December 7 at Manor House Event Center from 4:30 to 6:30 p.m. Attendees are instructed to bring an unwrapped, new toy suitable for infants to young teens for the Building Blocks for Kids (BB4K) toy drive. Toys will be distributed to families by BB4K. Event registration information can be found at Business.MadeChamber.org.
Kings Local School District
The Kings Local School District is implementing an "Adopt a Family" model for this year's Holiday Help Program. The district is anticipating around 150 families, equaling about 350 students. Please refer to KingsLocal.net for updates. Any direct questions can be sent to Lauren Wise, Kings Local Schools District resource coordinator (email@example.com).
Additionally, the student-led nonprofit clothing center, Kings Kloset, provides free garments and supplies to those in need within the district. They will be open on December 2 and January 13 for donation drop-off from 9-11 a.m. More information can be found at KingsLocal.net.
Help During Health Hardship
Often families need additional support when experiencing health concerns. The following local organizations provide a helping hand to families experiencing health hardships during the holiday season and year-round.
1. The Dragonfly Foundation presents a holistic and passionate mission to support pediatric cancer patients and their families, offering them many programs and services. One such service, perfect for this time of year, is gifting. All items must be new and in their original packaging. View the “items needed” for families at Dragonfly.org.
2. Ronald McDonald House Charities of Greater Cincinnati (the largest Ronald McDonald House in the world) offers support and the comforts of home to families with critically ill children. To serve their guests, many supplies are needed. You can purchase essential items via their official wishlist at Wishlist.RMHCincinnati.org.
3. Cincinnati Children's Hospital is a nonprofit, comprehensive pediatric health system. Gifts of toys, craft supplies, books and special items can help create moments of fun and distraction for patients while they’re in the hospital. You can select items from their Amazon Wish List at CincinnatiChildrens.org.