This year many things look and feel different than they did before. We meet together, but often virtually through phones and websites. We eat restaurant foods, but only by take-out and delivery at home. We attend mass, but sit at a distance and wear masks. This year the SVDP Christmas Food & Gift Box program also looks a little different, but they are carrying on in their tradition to make Christmas a little more special for several local families in need.
Starting in October, families from local public schools and anyone in need of support were invited to submit an application through the St. Anthony website. In total, 112 applications were submitted and approved. This weekend, each of these families will receive a food box for a complete Christmas meal including a ham or turkey, fresh produce, canned foods, desserts and gift cards. Each box will be customized for the dietary needs and child gift requests for each family. This program also serves the elderly and anyone who has expressed a need. In all, roughly 266 adults and 255 children will be served.
In years past, families would be invited into the church to shop for household necessities, clothes and toys before picking up their Christmas Food & Gift Boxes. This year, boxes will be distributed to registered guests through a drive-through car line where volunteers bring out boxes for them. Many hours of volunteer work and thousands of dollars in donations have gone into this effort. Thank you to our whole St. Anthony family and regular volunteers through SVDP for the outpouring of time, effort and generosity to make this happen!
Gladys Drummond and Meredith Williamson have led the charge for SVDP, along with the support of Gerlinde Lamer in the parish office, to make this program happen. Their efforts to uphold the Christmas giving tradition are making a very real and meaningful impact for each family and individual who receives a box. By supporting this program, we help them to share the gifts of hope and joy this holiday season, bringing comfort and nourishment to these homes.
The need to feed families and neighbors will continue long after this holiday season. The team at SVDP will continue to run their food pantry and hand out meal boxes on a regular basis in 2021. Your continued help and support is very much needed and is always appreciated! Please click here to learn more about the SVDP Food Pantry and get involved today.