Our Christmas will look different this year due to the impact of COVID19. We have taken important safety procedures to prevent the spread of the virus and have modified our operations to allow us to continue to serve our clients by giving out food and supplies from our front door, conducting mentoring sessions over the phone, and having outside meetings as weather permits. You will see these measures and more continue throughout the holiday season.
One of changes taking place this season is that our Circle of Giving Shop will re-locate by becoming a “mobile” one- with Santa and helper Elves delivering gifts to our families in place of the usual “shopping” setup here at Genesis House. We are extremely excited about the new experience this project will be for us and our families.
We have many wonderful gifts available to our clients, including toys, winter coats and boots, new clothing for children and adults, warm homemade quilts, and a good supply of household items. The generosity last year was amazing, and we received an abundance of items that have been stored away since last year. Due to a “slow down” of activity within our home in the past 8 months, and our modified work schedules, we have not had an adequate amount of time to fully organize and manage donations, other than the regular grocery and personal care items you have so faithfully brought to us, and we deeply appreciate the generosity you have shown. What did not slow down—but in fact, increased–was the need for emergency help and more food. Many of our clients experienced job losses, illnesses, and other set backs, which caused the inability to pay for rent, utilities, and other “normal life” expenses, as well as having children at home, with more food needed to prepare daily meals and creating an additional strain on resources.
So, we are asking that all who want to give this year, to keep the donation of “things” at a minimum, and to consider a gift of money, gift cards, or Chamber Bucks, instead. You can also call me to ask if we need something. We know if there is a specific item needed, you will respond as you always have.
We have wonderful plans for 2021, and the time beyond COVID when we can expand to provide prevention, education, and outreach programming in Polk and Butler Counties. This November, we have launched a fundraising campaign to help support Genesis House and our clients during this pandemic. We ask that you “stick with us” as we go through this tough time and share with us also the vision we have for the future of Genesis House. Funds raised now will help us to build and strengthen our services and operations in the coming years.
Your generosity will bring Comfort and Joy to our families this year who are struggling even harder since the pandemic hit. Your support has enabled us to “keep Christmas all year long” to ease the struggles and hardships for our clients. And along with the gift items, food, clothing, etc, our clients will receive the gift of HOPE – which is perhaps the most valuable and meaningful gift of all!! Thank you for helping the miracles continue to happen at Genesis House. Please call with questions and concerns. We wish you and your family a joyful and blessing-filled Christmas season as well.
Pat Lostroh, Executive Director– Genesis Hous