WHAT IS THE DEAR SANTA/CHRISTMAS GIFT PROGRAM?
Since 1995, the Friends Of Parkside (FOP) has sponsored its Annual Parkside Christmas Gift Day most commonly known as our Dear Santa Helper project to help provide children in the Villages at Parkside, formerly Parkside Homes, a public housing complex, with a Merry Christmas.
WHO ARE SANTA HELPERS?
Every year, FOP staff recruits caring people like you to be Santa Helpers to make a Parkside child’s Christmas wish come true. Santa Helpers come from all over Michigan and the United States and from all walks of life. Over the years, Santa Helpers have come from places as far as Boston, Texas, Seattle, and Iowa. Past Santa Helpers include University of Michigan faculty, employees, and students’ groups, Henry Ford Hospital, and Cub Scout Pack 34.
HOW DOES THE DEAR SANTA HELPER PROJECT WORK?
Parkside children age 5 to 13 fill out a “Dear Santa Helper” online form letter telling the Santa Helper their name, age, grade, up to three items they want most for Christmas, and the reason why. Also, this year, the Dear Santa Helper Project has been extended to fifteen children who are residents of the Detroit Housing Commission.
The Santa Helper reads the children’s letters and picks the child he or she would like to adopt for Christmas. The Santa Helper buys at least one of the three gifts and either deliver it or has it shipped to FOP offices. In some cases, the Santa Helper makes a cash donation. Christmas gifts are due the week of December 13th. If more time is needed, please let us know. We will distribute the gifts to the families as they arrive. In mid-January 2022, the Santa Helper receives a thank you letter from the child and parent and a picture of the child with the gift(s). This year, parents and children have the option to include a short thank you video with their thank you letter and picture. To read past Dear Santa Helper Helpers Thank You letters and photos see below.
Currently, we have received 53 Dear Santa Helper letters.
ARE DONATIONS TO THE DEAR SANTA HELPER PROJECT TAX-DEDUCTIBLE?
Yes!! Friends of Parkside is a 501(c)(3), tax-exempt organization. Also, we are registered with the Michigan Attorney General’s Charitable Trust Section – Registration# 61299.
HOW CAN I BECOME A SANTA HELPER?
To adopt a Parkside child or to make a donation, please visit https://bit.ly/2021dearsantahelper. Go to the top of this page and you can select a child by gender, age, grade, or make a donation. If your business or organization would like to adopt 5 or more children, or for more information, please call Latesa or Zachary at 313.822.0311 or email firstname.lastname@example.org.
This is a project of Friends Of Parkside (FOP) in partnership with the TVP Residents Council.