Friday, November 26, 2010

Spreading a Little Christmas Cheer

PhotobucketA few weeks ago I was talking with some of the students, at the school where I volunteer, about Christmas. One of the darling little 3rd grade girls said to me "I really want a baby doll." When I asked her if she had any baby dolls at home she said "no". My heart ached for her. How does a 10 year old not have a baby doll to play with? This may be just my opinion but shouldn't all little girls have a doll? It was at the moment that my brain started it's never ending thoughts about how I could get this little girl as well as all of her classmates a baby doll. I asked their teacher for some ideas on how I could reasonably and fairly provide a nice Christmas for the students. She simply said to me "toys are luxuries and don't meet their basic needs, and we have to focus on that". That really got me thinking. In most cases, these children's basic needs are not even being met especially when they are at home and here they are getting ready to finish the school year and be home for more than a month. I realized that if we were going to be giving them anything this Christmas it probably should be the necessities.

PhotobucketPhotobucketOver breakfast my friends, Lisa and Mandy, and I started talking about ideas of what we could and should do for the students. While I am a dreamer and a thinker I am not always a do-er! I often get so carried away in my thinking I don't even know where to start! I made the girls promise that they would help me get this off the ground or it may never actually happen! Mandy spoke with the owner of the school the following day and before I knew it we had planned a party for the whole school as well as a lunch box full of necessities for each student! I was a bit overwhelmed to say the least but extremely grateful that my good intentions where being forced into action! As we started talking logistics it occurred to me if everyone I knew gave just a little bit of money we would have enough to really make this Christmas special for these kids. As a 5th generation Mesa, Arizonan I know a lot of people and those people know a lot of people! So with little to lose out went an email and I waited to see what would happen. I didn't have to wait long and the response was overwhelming! I knew that people would want to help, but what I didn't expect was that everyone was just as ambitious and excited as I was, and they haven't even met the little beauties! Mandy put together a page for Facebook and even more people were able to be reached. As we were talking to the principal of Anna's school asking her about some local stores where we could buy the items, she asked what it was for. When we told her what we were doing she was so excited she asked us to put something together to ask for help from all the parents at the school! So now the Acacia school is involved as well!

I don't have a total yet, but from what we have already received we have been able to buy each child a lunchbox (the fabric cooler type); grades R (kindergarten) through 4 boys: marbles, matchbox cars and a top, grades R though 4 girls: BABY DOLLS :), grades 5 through 7 girls make-up bags with lip gloss, nail polish a bracelet and a magazine (they love love love teeny bopper magazines), backpacks for the boys moving on to secondary school and something (still undecided)  for the grade 5-7 boys. With help from Acacia we are also going to be filling their lunch boxes with toothbrushes, toothpaste, washcloths, soap, chips, candy, fruit, erasers, pens and crayons!!! We are also giving them a pizza party with cookies and milk (it may not seem very exciting but they eat the same bland food every single day)! Even better we are giving each of the incredibly deserving, hard working teachers a basketful of goodies and may even have left overs to give the school cash for their unending needs!!!!! This has to be one of the coolest experiences I have ever had and I am loving every minute of the planning, shopping and organizing of this incredible event!

PhotobucketThrough this experience, I have realized that I am extremely spoiled as are my children! I have found myself asking several times, will they really like this, should we be giving them something bigger. And I always receive the same response: "they are happy to be given doesn't matter what it is as long as they finally have something that is just theirs"! These are truly some of the happiest, loving, most beautiful children I have ever met. They have so little and yet they seem happier to me then those of us that have everything. I can't wait to see the look on their faces when they are given the gifts that a group of strangers from all around the world helped to provide! This is going to be the best Christmas ever....for me too!

1 comment:

  1. Oooooo this is so exciting! Take LOTS of pictures and post them ALL!