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Article updated: 12/6/2012 5:13 PM

Give new toys, nonperishables or sponsorship for the needy

By

The Humanitarian Service Project (HSP) of DuPage County, is calling for donations of New Toys and Non-perishables to help the annual Christmas Offering. The Carol Stream based organization will distribute to more than 1,200 Low-Income Children, and 121 Impoverished Senior Citizens through this event. HSP's program has been putting gifts under the Christmas Trees of Needy Children since its inception in 1979, and will also provide 150 Needy Families this Christmas with more than three weeks of nutritious groceries.

This is the Thirty-fourth year that the Christmas Offering has been serving the poor. Individuals or group donors can help by participating in the "Giving Tree" program. Donors are provided the gender and ages of Needy Children along with a list of suggested gifts for Children of that age group. HSP is asking that they buy a $25 gift, wrap it, and deliver it to their Carol Stream Center by December 21st. HSP is already committed to serving at least 1200 children through the Christmas Offering, and everyday they receive calls from impoverished families, hoping desperately that a donor will come along for their children as well. They have 321 children on the waiting list presently, which is above and beyond the 1200 already committed. We are hoping to fulfill the needs of all the children on the waiting list. In hopes of this, we are taking gifts until we close for the day on December 21, to be able to reach as many children as possible.

Interested parties can also make donations of unwrapped toys, in lieu of providing giving trees to specific children. HSP's greatest need is gifts for children in the underserved "tween" age group, from 8-15 years old.

Non-perishables and monetary donations are needed to support the Christmas Offering's goal to provide 150 families each with 200 lbs of nutritious food this Holiday Season. For a monetary sponsorship of $60 per family, donors can ensure the children and other members of these needy families have access to healthy foods during this time of particular financial stress for those sadly living in poverty.

Throughout the running of the Christmas Offering for the past 34 years, HSP Co-founder and Executive Director, Karole Kettering, has seen the amazing difference that helping out the needy members of the community makes to their Christmas spirit. Kettering says, that "the purpose of the Offering has always been to make an impact in the lives of the neediest of our community, by spreading the spirit of compassion and giving in a time that can be particularly stressful for them. When the community draws together like this, we can prove that miracles surely do happen."

Contact the Humanitarian Service Project: hsp@humanitarianservice.org.

HSP's website: www.humanitarianservice.org

HSP's blog: humanitarianserviceproject.blogspot.com.

About The Humanitarian Service Project:

HSP's mission is to alleviate the pain and suffering that poverty creates in seniors and children living in DuPage and Kane counties, Illinois. Last year during the Christmas Offering Project, 1,616 children received gifts and 150 impoverished families received three weeks of groceries, frozen meats, and fresh produce. With the Senior Citizen Project, HSP provides a monthly food delivery and secret pal gifts to 121 low-income seniors. The Children's Birthday Project reaches the youngest underprivileged, making birthdays and Christmas truly memorable occasions for 900 children. Feed the Kids provides 100 low-income families with groceries and fresh produce during the summer months. HSP conducts an annual school supplies drive that benefited a total of 5,200 children by giving supplies to the DuPage Back to School Fair and directly to schools and individual children.

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