WBKR Christmas Wish Week One in Pictures [PHOTOS]
Week one is in the books. It was a week of familiar faces, volunteers and giving. We're just getting started, but much progress has been made. Santa even stopped by!
On Monday, Christmas Wish officially opened at their new location, inside of the Towne Square Mall in Owensboro. We hit the ground running and appreciate everyone that stopped by to donate and volunteer.
Christmas Wish will be open Monday-Friday from 9A-6P and on Saturday from 12P-4P. Our Elf Volunteers have been working hard "Making sure every child in the Tri-State gets a visit from Santa" this holiday season, and a hot meal on Christmas Day with a ham or turkey.
Please remember as you see these photos, or hear us on the radio telling the stories, that the need is still there. We will service over 1200 families, with close to 900 Christmas meals including a ham or turkey. We'll take care of Christmas for over 4,000 children, equaling over 12,000 toys. So, if you see someone that donated 40 bikes or 60 hams, as you can see, that will just get us started. We have a lot of work to be done.
Here's some wonderful moments from week one (in no particular order). Even if for some reason, I didn't meet you or see you, when you stopped by, just know that we appreciate your donation very much. It will be put to good use.
The Eyeballerz Car Show Club. I think God decided that we all needed each other in our lives. This family went through a tragedy and turned it into a triumph. I still remember that moment three years ago, when I met the family of Jonathon Gray. They raise money all year long in his name, and stopped by to adopt forty-nine children.
Florence... What can be said about a lady that works every single day to knit hats for children. She once again came through with over 700 hats. Truly, she knitted over 700 hats in all colors and sizes. She has a servants heart, and every year I can't wait to see her walk through the Christmas Wish doors.
Imagine just sitting around the breakfast table each morning drinking coffee with your friends. Imagine the idea to come together and help in such a BIG way. These men, who didn't want recognition, are angels among us. Now, can you imagine the excitement on Christmas morning!
Conner is amazing. A sweet young man that already knows what it takes to make a difference. When Conner stops by the office, everyone instantly smiles, because he just has that affect on people. We love seeing familiar faces.
We also love seeing new faces like these little ones. They adopted a family and really wanted to be sure the kids were taken care of. They are adorable and kind. Many other children did the exact same thing!
One lovely couple stopped by with quite the haul. I talked with them about why they felt compelled to donate, and the answer was quite simple. He grew up with nothing, and knows the feeling of going without. He and his wife shop sales all year long, so they can get as much as possible for the kids. They wished to stay anonymous, but we can't thank them enough for caring and donating.
Thank you to the Daviess County Pork Producers for dropping off 60 hams, to get the season started. Perdue Farms for donating chicken breasts for the food baskets, and the employees at Sam's Club for donating turkey's. With over 900 food baskets, that will be delivered this season, we'll need all of the help that we can get.
Sam's Club is always about giving back to the community and this year, Christmas Wish was one of the beneficiaries. I shop all year long for Christmas Wish, with many stops at Sam's Club. The associates and managers are always so supportive, and this year Christmas Wish received a $2000 check to help the mission. What a way to kick off the season!
"Community giving is something we are very proud of at Sam’s Club. We believe we make the greatest difference by supporting causes that are important to our members and associates. We are so proud to offer local nonprofit organizations funds through our Community Grant Program."
So many clubs, organizations and businesses come together each year to make donations. Christmas Wish depends on those much needed toys, coats, food items and monetary donations, to make it through the entire season. Thank you. Thank you!
Our volunteers....... What can I say about these hardworking, wonderful humans. U.S. Bank, through their Charitable Giving program, gives their employees a chance to work in the community throughout the year. Many of them choose Christmas Wish. I see many familiar faces every year, and news ones too. We appreciate that they choose our program for those days, because we couldn't do what we do, without them. They understand the mission, support it and truly fight for any open slot on the schedule to help! That says everything, and we appreciate them more than they could ever know!
Businesses and community residents also volunteer throughout the season. I always recommend emailing firstname.lastname@example.org before you come, to be sure the need will be there when you arrive. We appreciate you giving your time for the cause.
Our local businesses and restaurants, that hold fundraisers, are essential to support the mission. From giveback days, to fundraisers, to employee giving. What a beautiful community we live in. We had a few this week already! Thanks to the Whitesville Mercantile, Angels for Ashley Cooking Team, the Morris Family and Perdue Farms for a wonderful fundraiser. Perdue provided chickens that the cooking team smoked up for donations. The Morris Family for hosting the Christmas Wish Open House, with donated raffle items and more. It's a fundraiser that we look forward to every single year.
On Black Friday, at Ollie's Bargain Outlet we loaded up the Owensboro RV Toy Hauler for Christmas Wish. It was a wonderful day of giving!
Azzip Pizza also had a giveback day last week. 20% of orders went to help those in need for the holiday's. Great pizza and giving, equals full bellies and a full heart!
I would like to thank our full-time volunteers, who start working on Christmas Wish weeks before the office even opens. Some come in before or after their full time jobs. Some stay after closing, because there's still much to be done. Many sacrifice so much, because they believe in what Christmas Wish stands for. We lean on each other, cry with each other, complain to each other, make fun of each other, care for one another and give. For them, I will FOREVER be grateful. They know who they are.
We couldn't do it with the volunteers and community support. These local businesses are part of the reason that 100% of what is donated, goes directly to those who need it most. If you see any owners or employees of these businesses please say thank you on behalf of the community!
A BIG thank you to Towne Square Mall who generously donated space again this year and a much larger one at that. We couldn't have Christmas Wish without you, and we truly appreciate it.
Also, Greenwell Chisholm Printing Company, Bako’s Party Rentals, Halloween Havoc, Lang Office Equipment, Green River Appliance & Furniture, Home City Ice, Lonnie Nave's Service Co, Inc, Diamond Lake Campground & Resort and Office Equipment Company.
Swedish Match Co., Kimberly-Clark Paper Co., Daviess County Pork Producers, Perdue Farms and Kentucky Legend – Donations for Food Baskets
Our volunteers work so many tireless hours and it's amazing that these fine folks feed them through the season. Please thank them for supporting the Christmas Wish volunteers and the mission. Chick-fil-A Owensboro, Salsarita's Fresh Mexican Grill, Firehouse Subs, Raising Cane's and CocaCola Bottling Company in Owensboro.
Thank you once again to Henderson Chevrolet Buick GMC for sponsoring the Christmas Wish office.