GREENWICH, Conn. – Community members are taking up the wish lists of needy Greenwich and Fairfield County families and adopting them for the holidays, thanks to Family Centers.
“With Adopt-A-Family, some people ask for very practical things, like they need something as simple as a microwave or a piece of furniture. Other people with kids ask for gifts they can give so they don’t miss out on the magic of the holidays,” said Bill Brucker, communications director for the Greenwich-based nonprofit that serves 18,000 people each year throughout lower Fairfield County.
Need has grown as the economy continues to slump. “Over the past few years, we’ve gotten more and more inquiries on how people in the community can help out people who are in real financial distress,” said Brucker. “It’s really making the holidays brighter for some of our clients.”
The 30 programs aimed at helping parents and families with preschool education, HIV and AIDS prevention, and job placement, among other things. Managers and directors are asked to put together snapshots of families that include wish lists for the holidays. “Folks come through in spades. They really go above and beyond with the wish lists,” said Brucker. Residents and corporations that contact Family Centers are given a waiting family.
For those who can’t adopt an entire family, a general holiday wish list has also been created. “People, depending on their ability to donate, sometimes can only purchase a few things,” said Bruckner. “Usually they’re one-time small gifts, like a boy looking for a particular LEGO; a little girl looking for a special doll; or if a family can’t afford to buy shoes for their family.”
The wish list be available to the public on the group’s website by the end of the week. All gifts are due at Family Centers for distribution by Dec. 19.