Batavia United Way partners with BPS101 to identify struggling families in need of help providing Christmas for their children.
School Counselors and Social Workers identify the families and Batavia United Way matches these anonymous families with businesses, service organizations and community members who purchase gifts from a wish list.
We begin matching families to a Sponsor in November each year, with assignments being completed by Black Friday. In 2017, the district identified 114 families in need of assistance including 266 children of all ages.
To adopt a family, email firstname.lastname@example.org. Checks or gift card donations are welcome and used to offset some of the expense of adopting our larger families. Cash and gift cards are also used to cover last minute needs that come up after all families are assigned.
100% of donations specified for Adopt A Family are used only for this purpose.
Following is a message to our 2017 Sponsors following a record year of support:
Once again we partnered with Batavia Public Schools and the community to adopt 114 families, including 266 children for Christmas. Our adopted families received groceries from Chip In, Christmas stockings organized by Batavia Women’s Club, gifts from 76 Batavia United Way volunteer sponsors, socks & underwear from drives conducted by Batavia Lion’s Club and Fox Valley Presbyterian Church, boxes of cereal from a drive conducted by Kiddie Academy, thousands of dollars in gift cards provided by Batavia Women in Business, Doughnation Bakery, Batavia Dance Team and a long list of families, businesses and individuals eager to help.
In addition, the Batavia High School Interact Club wrapped gifts for Adopt A Family tips at Barnes and Noble and a team of young BHS entrepreneurs donated a percentage of profits from their new business West Exit to Adopt a Family. Also, residents of The Holmstad (home to the Batavia United Way office) organized their own drive and donated pajamas, body care, makeup and more
for our teenagers. An incredible outpouring of support!
Once again, Louise White Elementary School hosted our drop off night with great enthusiasm, flexibility and humor. Jennifer Zorn, our primary contact at Louise White School sent us this email a week later:
“A sweet little girl came in this morning with her new coat, hat, gloves and scarf with a HUGE smile on her face!! Grandma walked her to school and gave me a huge hug to say thank you for everything that they received. This sweet girl gave me a hug too and said thank you! So thankful for all who helped our families!”
Speaking of coats, once again the Huddleston family donated over 250 new children’s coats from their business Snowsuitsforkids.com. We matched coats to adopted families, each school was contacted re: any coat/snowpant needs at their school and when this was done, we had a supply to share with 4 other non-profits throughout the county. Thank you Huddleston Family! And a BIG thank you to The Holmstad who gave us space to store, sort and organizing this large donation!
This year, the Adopt A Family project coincided with the move of a homeless family from a long motel stay into an apartment with their 4 children.
Chip In, St. Vincent DePaul, ReHome and Batavia United Way worked together to set up housekeeping for this family. Volunteers continued to contact United Way seeking to adopt families after all had been assigned and, presented with this situation, they opted to purchase new bedding, pillows, and linens for all 6 family members. A late call came in from Jason at Bulldog’s Cellar, he rallied his troops and he rounded out the set up with a new vacuum cleaner, kitchen supplies, gift cards and more. This family has been truly lifted and they are set to soar in the new year. Great teamwork by multiple organizations.
It is hard to summarize a project that is so vast in scope, includes so many volunteers and moving parts and has such an incredible core of love and caring. Every school in BPS101 had families in need of adoption and the entire project starts on the desk of BPS staff. We simply could not orchestrate this project without their help and heart. A Daily Herald article dated December, 2009 announced the exciting news that Batavia United Way had doubled the number of families adopted for the holidays. They went from SIX to TWELVE.
Today we are at 114. Look what we have accomplished together with such compassion, energy and teamwork. Thank you!