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updated: 11/26/2012 10:36 AM

Christmas Sharing Seeks Donations and Volunteers

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Beth Gustafson

It's Christmas Sharing time again!

Wheaton/Warrenville Christmas Sharing served more than 1,200 families last year. As our economy continues to fluctuate, the need looks even greater for 2012.

Already students in School District 200 are collecting food, new and gently used clothing, and toys to help less fortunate families in our area. Sponsored by School District 200, churches in Wheaton and Warrenville, individuals, and businesses, this program reaches to the corners of our community.

Families apply to participate in the program through their children's school. They are sent a letter of invitation to come to one of the designated churches to make their selections. Families may choose clothing and household goods, new Christmas toys for their children, and receive a box of food. World Relief also plays an active role in identifying the newly arrived families that are in need of assistance in the area.

School District 200 donates its vans and gas to transfer the collected items and food to various churches. Every church prepares for Christmas Sharing in its own way, but mostly it is a week of sorting, sizing, and stacking clothing, shoes, toys, books, and household items. Non-perishable food is sorted and food boxes are prepared for each family according to size.

Local businesses donate food, paper goods, soap and clothing. Individuals and civic groups donate money, which is used to purchase gift certificates to local grocery stores, which are then given to each family. Many area restaurants donate meals for the hungry volunteers as they work to prepare for this community-wide event.

Churches involved are: Aldersgate United Methodist, First Presbyterian, Gary Memorial United Methodist, Holy Cross Lutheran, St. John Lutheran, and Trinity Episcopal of Wheaton and Blanchard Alliance, Community Baptist, Immanuel Presbyterian, St. Irene Roman Catholic, and Trinity Lutheran of Warrenville.

This quiet miracle has happened in our community every year for the past 43 years. Won't you please find it in your heart to help others that need the help the most?

Please visit and contact one of the churches if you can volunteer or donate food, clothing or money. Two local restaurants are also helping raise funds; take the appropriate voucher to Chili's or Genghis Grill by November 30th and they will donate 10% of all sales to Christmas Sharing.

For further information: Contact Bob Donisch at (312) 656-8569.