Updated: Jan 24
What an incredible way to end the year!
Following our virtual and in-office toy drive for Kids Need More, some of our team members also participated in the Holiday Cheer Bus Event over the weekend. The day was filled with bittersweet emotions, as our team members visited 11 local families – some with more than one child battling a life-threatening illness, and some also struggling with financial hardship through the COVID-19 pandemic.
Who we visited:
A family with two children. A 9-yr old girl who loves drawing and fashion, and a 3-yr old boy with a congenital heart defect and autism who likes Muppet babies.
A family with four kids, their father is currently out of work. A 14-yr old girl who enjoys reading, an 11-yr old boy who is a fan of the Islanders, a 9-yr old girl who likes arts and crafts, and a 7-yr old boy who suffers from bilateral hearing loss and had open-heart surgery, but also likes playing with Legos.
A family with four children whose caregiver was diagnosed with Stage 3 Breast Cancer and is currently in remission. A 3-yr old girl who loves Jojo Siwa, a 4-yr old boy who loves Paw Patrol, a 5-yr old boy who enjoys playing basketball, and a 7-yr old girl who likes baking.
A family with four children, one who struggles with ADHD and Autism. 10-yr old and 5-yr old girls who enjoy playing with dolls, a 6-yr old boy who likes Thomas the Train, and a 4-yr old boy who loves Batman and Spiderman.
A family with five kids. During the pandemic, mom had COVID-19, was separated from her family, then forced to shelter-in-place for months with her youngest, unable to see her other kids. An 8-yr old boy who wants violin lessons, a 6-yr old boy who wants to learn more about sharks, a 4-yr old boy who enjoys art and painting, a 2-yr old girl with Trisomy 21 Down Syndrome and a congenital heart defect that likes to play with learning toys, and a 1-yr old girl who has the same struggles as her sister but loves books and toys with texture.
A family with two children who are facing eviction and domestic violence. A 5-yr old boy who likes Paw Patrol and Legos, and a 2-yr old girl who enjoys drawing, books, and Cocomelon.
A family with three children who have lived in a shelter for two years due to financial hardship. A 12-yr old boy who likes playing basketball, and twin 10-yr old girls with learning disabilities who enjoy crafts. One of their daughters has had multiple surgeries for cleft lip and palate.
A family with one 8-yr old boy who is currently in remission with Burkitts Leukemia; he likes drawing and Pokemon cards.
A family of six children, currently in foster care due to their parent passing away. A 16-yr old girl who likes cosmetics like makeup and perfume, a 14-yr old boy who likes Lord of the Rings, a 10-yr old boy who wants a Nintendo Switch, a 9-yr old girl who asked for a weighted blanket, a 6-yr old boy who likes Hot Wheels, and an infant baby boy who is in need of some toys.
A family with four kids. During the pandemic, their household had COVID-19 and couldn't attend school. Mom is currently in remission with Hodgkins Lymphoma but also suffers from diabetes and kidney stones. A 14-yr old boy who found out he cannot participate in sports due to medical reasons and now is interested in Xbox games, a 16 yr-old girl who is interested in Chakra and energy healing, a 10-yr old girl who likes LOL dolls, and a 7-yr old girl who also likes LOL dolls.
A family with four kids. All of the children have epilepsy, two have autoimmune disorders, and one is nonverbal autistic. Mom has undergone multiple surgeries, had COVID 19, and was in an abusive relationship. The father is no longer in their lives. A 6-yr old girl who enjoys baking, a 3-yr old boy who likes Marvel, a 2-yr old boy who enjoys playing with sensory toys, and an infant boy who would love baby light-up toys.
We are honored to have been a part of this event and delighted to know we brought holiday cheer into these homes by delivering some of the gifts in their wish lists. We extend our thanks to Kids Need More for giving us the opportunity to participate in such a remarkable event and a special thank you to our team members who volunteered over the weekend.