Volunteers delivering gifts to children in need

Posted at 10:13 AM, Dec 22, 2016
and last updated 2016-12-22 10:13:42-05

Hundreds of children across Mid-Michigan who may have missed out on the holidays are getting a special delivery starting Wednesday.

Volunteers with Santa's Wish List are dropping off gifts to more than 300 families in need. The program is trying to bridge the gap helping families who don't qualify for other assistance programs or missed the deadlines.

"We started seeing a need of people that came in after a lot of the other charities were able to provide help," explained Brent Forsberg.

Forsberg has been volunteering there for 9 years. The program relies on donations and help from volunteers to buy, wrap and deliver the gifts.

Forsberg says the need is growing and this year there's more than 300 kids on the list.

"A lot of the kids put on the list they are looking for basic needs, socks, shoes, coats, blankets," he explained. "We had a request for food and underwear from a 9-year-old this year."

The children get on the list through referrals. In one case Forsberg says a Lansing school referred kids, many of whom are homeless.

On Tuesday's Forsberg helped deliver gifts to EVE, a home for women and their children who have either been sexually assaulted or abused.

EVE's Executive Director Erin Roberts says the gifts are more than something to unwrap to the kids.

"The families that come to us often are experiencing a loss of hope, a lot of fear, a lot of trauma," she said. "A group like this that comes forward and is able to provide them with items that they really wish they had, is a sign of generosity and is a sign of hope."

Roberts called that the best gift of all and one you can't put a price tag on.

"Really the gift that they need is to know that others care and want them to feel that joy," she added.