December 8, 2014: In the spirit of the season, local business, religious and civic organizations are banding together to deliver toys, clothing and household necessities to more than 1,300 families this season. The Children’s Friend annual Spirit of Giving Holiday Drive matches generous individuals and organizations with families in need throughout the state. Coats, warm clothing, blankets, books, toys and other items are collected in the spirit of the season and brought to Children’s Friend for distribution.
“Rhode Island has been experiencing a slow recovery after our country’s recent recession,” said President and Chief Executive Officer David Caprio. “Holiday gifts are simply out of reach for most of the families we serve. There simply isn’t money left over for extras like gifts,” he added. “With the help of generous individuals and organizations from around the state, over 4,000 children have a moment of pure joy when they’re handed a gift from their wish list.”
Children’s Friend provides flexible, effective, and culturally-relevant services to Rhode Island’s most vulnerable children, year round. The Spirit of Giving Holiday Drive provides gifts of clothing and toys to make the winter holidays a special time for Rhode Island’s most vulnerable families. In 2013, over 1,200 families received wonderful gifts from supporters. The agency matches sponsors with families who are currently receiving services from Children’s Friend and are in need.
For those needs that aren’t met through sponsorship, Children’s Friend uses holiday drive grant funds, general gift donations, monetary gifts and gift cards to purchase items from a family’s wish list. Gifts are then delivered with wrapping materials by the family’s social worker to parents, ensuring that they are able to celebrate the holiday season.
Families are still awaiting sponsors. To sponsor a family, go to spiritofgivingdrive.org or call: 401-276-4346. General donations are being accepted at Children’s Friend headquarters at 153 Summer Street in Providence, Monday through Friday from 8 a.m. until 5:30 p.m. each day. Monetary gifts are also welcomed in support of the Spirit of Giving Holiday Drive and can be mailed to Spirit of Giving Holiday Drive, c/o Children’s Friend, 153 Summer Street, Providence, RI, 02903. Children’s Friend is a charitable, 501 (c) 3 organization and donations are tax-deductible to the fullest extent of the law.
Organizations that have stepped forward to date include Amica, Bank of America, Blum Shapiro, Brown University, Citizens Bank of Rhode Island, Collette Vacations, Grace Episcopal Church, GTECH, Johnson & Wales, Magna Hospitality, MetLife, Panera Bread, Partridge Snow & Hahn LLP, Providence College, St. Frances de Sales Church, Stop & Shop, Teknor Apex, and the University of Rhode Island to name only a few.