Ann Davis Transition Society in Chilliwack is working hard to make Christmas special for their families. You can help by donating gift cards, cash. (Pixabay photo)

Ann Davis Transition Society in Chilliwack is working hard to make Christmas special for their families. You can help by donating gift cards, cash. (Pixabay photo)

Push is on to get toys under trees for Chilliwack families

Ann Davis Transition Society pivoting to different strategy as COVID-19 pandemic cancels toy drive

Ann Davis Transition Society needs your help to make sure all children in Chilliwack have Christmas this year.

Like many other organizations, the pandemic is threatening one of their biggest initiatives.

Over the years, originally Sears and then Chilliwack Super Store have ensured the families we serve have received toys for their children and helped provide for their Christmas. This year, due to COVID, the Ann Davis Transition Society (ADTS) and Superstore Toy drive has been unable to take place, leaving children throughout Chilliwack at risk of waking up with nothing under the tree Christmas morning.

There was very short notice of the cancellation with COVID, says Patti MacAhonic, executive director of ADTS.

“And as you know families are in need of supports more than ever this year,” she said. “We really need your help! Families are struggling and at ADTS we don’t want to let the families we serve go without. We typically help single parent, working poor families who don’t qualify for other services.”

MacAhonic remembers very clearly a client four years ago who was a single dad of three little girls.

“His wife had just passed away, he had to leave his job and his EI had not come in,” she said. “He did not know what to do, he had no family and someone had told him to come in to see us. He was clearly uncomfortable asking but wanted something to put under the tree for his three little girls.”

MacAhonic and a staff member took him into their Christmas room and he was at a loss on what to choose. They asked him the ages, chose Frozen dolls, knitted and crocheted slippers and scarves, PJ’s and stocking stuffers.

“He started crying and so did we,” she said. “As we all stood there crying together the meaning of Christmas was right there in that room. The next year that single dad came back and donated to our Christmas program.”

They are asking the community to consider sharing the meaning of Christmas with those who need it most in these challenging times — our children and families. With physical distancing requirements and not much time, you can help by donating gift cards or by donating to Ann Davis Transition Society specifying Christmas for Kids, use the Donate Now button at www.anndavis.org, Etransfer to Finance@anndavis.org, (use your address in the message for tax receipts), by phone at 604-792-2760 or in person or by mail at 9046 Young Rd. Chilliwack BC V2P 4R6.

“We depend on our community members and businesses to assist and support our efforts in providing services for the most vulnerable in our community,” MacAhonic said. “You can make a real difference for local families by donating to ADTS. Each donation positively impacts the life of a person or family in your very own community. We thank you for your commitment and dedication to preventing and ending violence against women and children and to helping families, especially during these extraordinary times.”

To find out more about Ann Davis Tranisition Society visit them online at www.anndavis.org.

READ MORE: Ann Davis Transition Society shifting its services in the age of COVID-19


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