June 15th, 2024

Stockings of Hope extending deadline for weekend push

By Ry Clarke - Lethbridge Herald Local Journalism Initiative Reporter on December 16, 2022.

The YWCA will be extending the duration of its Stocking of Hope campaign throughout the weekend in an effort to provide as much as possible to the community during the holiday season.

Starting the campaign off with 200 stockings, the organization is looking to fill the need for the remaining 40 so everyone on Santa’s YWCA list can have a Christmas full of cheer.

“Every year we host our Stocking of Hope campaign to help women in need and their families that are staying with us, or have used the YWCA in the last year,” said Cat Champagne, external relations director with the YWCA. “With each stocking we reach out to our participants and give them a ‘wish list’ for particular items that they may need as well as their children. Then we prioritize them based on individual needs. We put the stockings together for anyone in the community to adopt, usually they average between $100 or less per stocking. Those lists are given to the person who purchases the item and then they bring us all the unwrapped gifts. We then wrap them and deliver for Christmas.”

Looking to make sure no one is left without a gift under the Christmas tree, the campaign will be extended throughout the weekend.

“Normally our program ends on the 16th of December, giving people enough time to do their shopping and bringing them back to us. But since we have quite a few stockings that are not yet taken off the website (ywcalethbridge.com/stocking-of-hope-2022/) we are doing an extension to next Monday,” said Champagne. “We also offer a chance to make a cash donation to the program. The stockings that we have left over, that don’t get adopted, our staff will go out and shop for those.”

Understanding the aversion some people have to going out during the holiday rush of shopping, donating cash still contributes to helping a family in need.

“If you go on our website, the same place you would get a stocking, there is a donation option to the Stocking of Hope,” said Champagne. “Donating that way, they can get a tax receipt for the donation.”

When it comes to Christmas, the gifts we picture under the tree may differ from those in need.

“We see everyday items on these lists. Things like clothing, socks, pots and pans, dishes, blankets, pillows, the things that regular people take for granted,” said Champagne. “There is also a ton of fun things on those lists, but there are also the necessities. A lot of it is basic items that you would probably not even think someone would want for Christmas, but it’s a need rather than a want for them.”

Hoping to see everyone happy during the holiday season, the campaign will continue through the weekend asking those feeling generous to help a family out this holiday season.

“If someone wants to get involved there’s multiple ways they can do it. They don’t even have to leave their house, they can do it through a monetary donation,” said Champagne. “I know for some people it is hard to adopt a stocking financially. But if there is anything that people can do to help for those in need, we can use that.”

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