Are you attempting to organize your own food drive or gift collection to help out those less fortunate than you this holiday season? That's admirable, indeed. But, alas, your charitable spirit can give you added stress if you’re not organized and you might end up yelling at your elves.
Here are some tips from Sarah Rutka, who has become somewhat of an expert through trial and error.
Rutka is a co-founder of Holiday Helpers, a volunteer-based non-profit organization that puts 100 percent of the funds it raises into Christmas packages that are delivered to more than 150 low-income families across the Greater Toronto Area (GTA). These families are sourced through partnerships with such credible charitable organizations as Ontrack, Windfall Clothing, St. Michaels of All Angels, The Yonge Street Mission and The Massey Centre For Women, and then interviewed so that Holiday Helpers can come up with wish lists for them.
Each package is valued at about $200 and consists of a fully decorated artificial Christmas tree, a $75 gift card to a local grocery store and gifts for each family member from their wish lists — which usually include winter jackets, boots, warm clothes, toys, books and health and beauty aids.
* Samaritanmag.com is an online magazine covering the good deeds of individuals, charities and businesses.