Gifts From the Heart Christmas Shop: How You Can Help Local Families
Bicycles, Games, and Toys for Children Served Through 8 Local Nonprofits: How You Can Provide Christmas Philanthropy to Local Families in Need!
Gifts from the Heart Christmas Shop is a unique partnership between eight local nonprofit organizations - Neighbor Up Brevard, Club Esteem, Love INC, Family Promise of Brevard, Community of Hope, Eckerd Connects, New Life Mission and Women’s Center of Brevard. Each organization serves families who live on the economic margins of our community. During the Christmas season, parents and guardians of children served by these eight organizations are offered the opportunity to purchase Christmas gifts for the children in their household for a greatly reduced and affordable price at one of the two Gifts from the Heart Christmas Shop locations. Each gift purchased is, in essence, two gifts – a gift for the child; plus, the gift of joy and an affirmation of dignity for the parent.
Here’s how it works:
Toys are sold at the shop at prices dramatically less than retail, purposely marked down to be affordable. For example, a toy with a retail value of between $50-$100 is priced at $13.
The shop provides a welcoming and festive experience where shoppers select from a large array of toys and have the choice of a complimentary gift wrap from caring volunteers.
An option is available for those families experiencing financial hardship to earn “Shop Dollars” by volunteering with one of the partner organizations. For every hour volunteered, they earn a $10 credit to spend at the shop.
GFTH Christmas Shop also offers seasonal employment opportunities at each of its two locations - traditionally persons who are program participants at one of the eight partner organizations are hired to handle day-to-day operations at the shops; thus, providing a hand up to persons in need. All other assistance is provided by many volunteers from the partner organizations.
This will be the seventh year for Gifts From the Heart Christmas Shop initially launched by Neighbor Up Brevard, Club Esteem, and Love INC in 2016. The shop has been an amazing success with parents purchasing at least three gifts per child for 589 children in 2021! It is anticipated that the shop will serve close to 900 children in 2022.
To meet the demand, GFTH must collect and stock the shelves with at least 3,000 toys before opening day on December 3rd; and, community support is needed to make that happen! Here are a few ways to provide that support:
- Don’t care to shop in the stores? Donate new toys via the Amazon, Target, and Walmart gift registry links found on the “How to Help” page of the GFTH website at www.giftsfromtheheartshop.org. The registries consist of toys most desired by the children, as determined by input from those served through the 8 nonprofits.
- Donate cash. Cash donations are used to purchase items that fly off the shelves and need replenishing. Just put “GFTH” in the memo line and mail your check to any one of the partner organizations. Addresses are found on the website.
- Help get out the good word about GFTH. Promote GFTH to friends, congregations and businesses. “Like” Gifts From the Heart Christmas Shop page on Facebook at https://www.facebook.com/profile.php?id=100086739390809.
- Congregations and businesses may host a “Giving Tree” during part or all of the month of November.
We hope you will join us in helping to make this Christmas a little brighter for a neighbor in need!
For more information on Gifts from the Heart Christmas Shop, including a report from 2021, please check out the website at www.giftsfromtheheartshop.org