FRC says thanks for holiday season of giving

To the Editor:

The Southern Humboldt Family Resource Center (SHFRC) was bustling with excitement in December as community volunteers and center staff prepared for the holidays. The SHFRC coordinates holiday gift and food programs that are available for children and families in our community.

Over 60 families including 130 children received toys and over 160 families received a turkey dinner as part of the Holiday Food program. The Holiday Funding Partnership is a wonderful group of funders (Humboldt Area Foundation, McLean Foundation, St. Joseph’s Health System, Smullin Foundation, Union Labor Health Foundation, County of Humboldt Maternal Child and Adolescent Health, First 5 Humboldt, Pacific Gas and Electric), which provided funds for the turkeys.

Several Southern Humboldt individuals and groups also contributed including WISH, Alderpoint Assembly of God Church, Redwoods Rural Health Center, Redway Baptist Church and the Garberville Food Pantry/Presbyterian Church. We are very grateful to Becca Rotbergs who led a very effective group of parents to collect over $2,500 in local donations to help fill the food bags and provide toys. She organized a great group of volunteers who joined in the organizational preparation work.

Through the Southern Humboldt FRC with help from community donations 30 teenagers received flash drives for their holiday stockings. Thanks to the Marines’ Auxiliary Toys for Tots program, All Sport and Napa Auto Parts in Garberville, and individual donations, toys were provided to set up a shopping experience so that parents could come in and choose the right gifts for their children. Volunteers came in early and helped set up the shopping areas. A volunteer was assigned as a "personal shopper" for each family to help with choosing and carrying the toys needed for their children. Some parents took advantage of the gift-wrapping station, too.

The SHFRC works with other local agencies to be sure that all who want holiday help will receive it, including Head Start programs and county public health and social services programs. Toys were also distributed by Santa at the Garberville Veterans’ Hall on Christmas Day during their annual community dinner - another fantastic cooperative event.

The SHFRC is moving on into the New Year, with all the good will and big-hearted spirit of our volunteer supporters and donors, to continue to assist families with connections to whatever resources they may need.

We extend our sincere thanks to all of our partners for their amazing efforts and contributions to making this holiday season a good one for so many families.

The SHFRC is located on Whitmore Avenue in Redway.

For schedules of Southern Humboldt playgroups, and parent workshops please call us at 923-1147.

Josh Stanley

AFACTR AmeriCorps

Family Resource Center