HELENA — Good Samaritan Ministries has kicked off its annual Adopt-a-Family program and is looking for donors and volunteers to spread the holiday cheer and help ensure Helena-area children and families have gifts around the holiday season.
The Adopt-a-Family program pairs donors with families of various types and sizes to spread Christmas joy throughout the community.
When they find a donor and a family who applied to be adopted, Good Samaritan asks the adoptees to fill out paperwork and make a list of needs and wants, and they make sure to check it twice. Especially Good Samartin Ministries Assistant Coordinator Ava Babcock.
"Each individual and the family has a page that they write down their sizes, you know, what they want, what they need. And a paragraph just kind of talking about what kind of a person they are," said Babcock
They tell them to include a paragraph about themselves to personalize their list, so they can connect the donors to their adopted families to show what a difference the donations are to these families.
Good Samaritan's Truck Lead, Neil Bender, was a part of the program before as well, having his family adopted for the holiday season.
"It was a tight year for us. My kids were a little down. They didn't think that Santa was going to come that year. And, well, they lucked out," said Bender.
Bender couldn't have been more thankful when he was a part of the program.
"The look on my kid's faces when they woke up Christmas morning and it's like, holy cow, you know, Santa really does exist. You know, the spirit of Christmas. We try to get that our kids to understand. You know, it's not necessarily about getting gifts, but the spirit of giving, the spirit of being with family and being adopted," said Bender.
Bender wanted to emphasize that giving is the best part of the holiday season, and encourages everyone to give back to the community.
"Thank you to everybody out there that adopts the family or donates the Toys for Tots. I mean, these the marines and everybody that helps out around this year, this time of year, to help families, to help the children. Thank you," said Bender
Good Samaritan welcomes volunteers in all areas and donations to all initiatives. The Adopt-a-Family program runs right until Christmas, if you are interested in signing up to adopt a family contact Ara Babcock, assistance coordinator, at firstname.lastname@example.org.