The Cuyahoga County Division of Children and Family Services (DCFS) worked tirelessly through the Holiday season to provide cheer for adoptive and foster care families within Cuyahoga County.
DCFS, with the support of community members and local businesses provided toys, bikes and tablets for foster care youth through the Hope for the Holidays program, an annual gift program for children and teens in foster care.
More than 386 donors gave gifts to 661 families with a combined 1,528 foster care children receiving gifts. The gifts were passed out during a special drive-thru event at the Jane Edna Hunter building on December 11th.
A foster parent who participated in the Hope for the Holidays program said the event served as a “teachable moment,” for her foster children about the goodness of our community.
“Despite what they may hear or see in the world around them the positive people seem to not end up on the news that often, which is okay. But then there are moments like this where people from our very own communities are giving to others so they may have the best Christmas,” said the foster parent.
In addition to providing gifts for foster care youth, DCFS also provided gifts for more than 433 children who are in kinship care through the Adopt-A-Family program.
For this program, community members were encouraged to “adopt,” a family by purchasing a $50 e-gift card for each child as well as $50 e-gift card as a gift for the entire family.
More than 111 donors adopted families and purchased $47, 620 in gift cards for families.
One of the families involved in the program sent an email to the Outreach staff to express her gratitude.
“Everything was perfect. From the organization of the program, the pickup, the presentation of the gifts and the generosity/spirit of this event,” the caregiver added.
Kristin Gardner, the outreach coordinator for DCFS, said none of this would be possible without the outpouring of support from community residents, local business and faith-based institutions who graciously donated to the programs.
“The Holiday season brings out the best in us and our communities. To those who donated gifts, toys and gift cards as well as the caregivers who unselfishly give their time and homes to provide a safe environment for our most vulnerable, we say thank you for your generosity and support. We look forward to working with you again during the next holiday season.”