Glen Ellyn PTA moms help provide holiday gifts for nearly 600 families
Now here's a festive visual: A room filled with bags overflowing with perfectly wrapped gifts and giant stuffed animals.
That scene in the Glen Ellyn Elementary District 41 offices shows the scale of a Holiday Sharing program run by PTA moms for more than a decade. And it also shows the generosity of a community helping neighbors in need.
School board member Erica Nelson and Karen Winter started Holiday Sharing 14 years ago to provide gifts for families in the five towns within the district's boundaries. Winter and Therese Crawford run the program through a branch of PTA called Community Outreach.
Through their effort and the help of community partners, 595 children in the district received donated gifts for the holidays and Target gift cards. Each family also received grocery store gift cards.
Nelson, Winter and Crawford recently stuffed the presents in donated IKEA bags that packed the District 41 board room from wall to wall. Then volunteers delivered the gifts to families.
The supporters who provided gifts for Holiday Sharing were members of the Glen Ellyn Junior Women's Club; Glendale Heights police; the Council of Catholic Women at St. Petronille Parish; Operation Christmas, a project run by Rachel Seifert, a nurse at Churchill Elementary; and District 41 families, staff and PTA Community Outreach members.