Parishioners and Partners Show the True Holiday Spirit––Giving Back
Warm socks, a laundry hamper, a winter jacket, a backpack and notebooks to bring to school–these are just a few everyday items that Catholic Charities Boston’s clients are in need of this holiday season. With many impacted by the statewide housing crisis, the high cost of living, and the increased rates of food insecurity, the reality is that many of the families Catholic Charities serves are unable to afford or access such items.
Across the Agency and the broader community, individuals and organizations are coming together to ensure that Catholic Charities Boston’s clients have their basic needs met this holiday season and beyond.
St. Cecilia’s Parish, a longtime partner of Catholic Charities Boston, is once again offering an advent tree that allows parishioners to donate both grocery gift cards to clients working with the Agency’s Refugee and Immigrant Services team, and critical items to the Yawkey Child Care Center.
Mark Lippolt, Director of the Hunger and Homelessness Ministry at St. Cecilia’s Parish, said that he is grateful for the opportunity to make a difference in his community through the church’s partnership with Catholic Charities.
“Our collaborations with Catholic Charities – both through volunteerism and donations – have been so rewarding for our parishioners,” said Mark. “The Advent and Christmas seasons are times of particular need for our less fortunate neighbors, but we strive to support Catholic Charities throughout the year.”
One such example of St. Cecilia’s year-round partnership with Catholic Charities is the Amazon Birthday Wish List the parish set up roughly four years ago, after one young parishioner expressed a desire to help children in need properly celebrate their birthdays by donating the supplies needed to make a cake. The child’s generosity inspired Cecilia’s to create a Birthday Amazon Wish List, in which parishioners can donate the fixings of a birthday celebration, including cake mix, frosting, paper plates, and balloons, to families otherwise unable to afford these items. This initiative has not only brought joy to many of Catholic Charities young clients but has also helped alleviate stress for countless parents struggling to pay the bills.
Amazon Wish Lists have also proven to be successful in allowing anyone have a direct impact on families in need. Earlier this year, an Amazon Wish List with basic needs items was created for families living at the Catholic Charities Inn, many whom are newcomers to the U.S. and arrived at the shelter with nothing but the clothes on their backs. And a Sunset Point Wish List with toys, games, and arts-and-crafts supplies are gifted to children during Sunset Point Camp’s cherished Treasure Night, a tradition in which campers compete in games and raffles to earn prizes.
These simple but impactful initiatives demonstrate that the true holiday spirit is the spirit of giving – something that can be celebrated all year long. To learn more about how you can make a difference and support Catholic Charities Boston’s life-changing programs, visit our Ways to Give page here.
Part 4 of our Twelve Days of Giving Series, sharing heartwarming stories about people spreading joy and compassion within our community this holiday season.