Usually, people give gifts to the children of DFACS, but not so this year! The Children actually got to shop for gifts for others.
Children were receiving gifts but did not have the opportunity of experiencing the joy of giving. One Rotarian noticed and our club started the “Giving Side of Christmas” and the event has been a huge success.
The Club partnered with the Department of Family and Children Services and First Baptist Jonesboro, where the event is hosted in the gym.
It’s an effective concept that simulates the buying and giving experience. The children come and as they eat pizza, they make out a Christmas list of people they would like to give gifts.
For each one on their list they are given a “Rotary Buck”. They are assigned a personal shopper who takes them to the “Christmas Store”. Everything costs one Rotary buck. The shopper helps them make their selections and they take their purchases to one of the wrapping stations. A Rotarian or Church volunteer wraps the presents, puts the name tags on them and puts all the purchases in a shopping bag.
The children leave with Christmas to give. They are able to enjoy the complete Christmas experience.
After they shop, they enjoy playing in the gym. Most importantly, they visit and have a picture taken with Santa Claus.
The merchandise and monetary contributions are donated by Rotary Club members, DFACS employees, Church members and friends of the program.