Holiday Helping Hands Program
The Holiday Helping Hands program was started in 2020 by Wootton parents, Jennifer Eisenfeld and Nikki Bossert, as an outgrowth of the Wootton PTSA Community Outreach program. The Community Outreach program provides help to Wootton cluster families in need throughout the year. Examples of help provided include: backpacks/school supplies, shoes/coats, household furnishings, aid to families during an emergency/crisis. Families are referred by their school counselor/personnel pupil worker (PPW).
Jen is the Community Outreach Liaison for the Wootton PTSA and Nikki is the Treasurer/Membership Chair for the Wootton PTSA. Click here to see the short thank you videos they put together for their donors the last few years.
In 2020, Jen and Nikki collected monetary donations and provided clothing, holiday gifts, and grocery store gift cards to 24 families with a total of 67 children. They shopped for the families themselves but also had parents that adopted families and did the shopping themselves. Gift wrapping was done at home and gifts were dropped off on porches.
In 2021, the program evolved and rather than relying solely on financial donations to fulfill their needs, Jen and Nikki created a registry system that would allow parents to "shop" without the stress of figuring out what to buy. The system works this way: (1) once information about each child (e.g., clothing sizes, interests) is received from the school counselor/PPW, a registry is created for that child on Target/Amazon; (2) that information is used to add items to the registry; (3) links to the registries are posted on this website; (4) parents then purchase as little or as many items that they want for each child; (5) the items are shipped to Jen's house to be organized; (6) parents/students wrap the gifts on a designated wrapping weekend at Jen's house; and (7) gifts are delivered to the child's school/home. The program had 32 families with a total of 66 children in 2021.
In 2022, the program had 31 families with 78 children. We worked to engage more of a parents from all of the Wootton cluster schools. We did this so that financial support for the program was not solely provided by Wootton parents.
In 2023, we hope to continue the success of past years and welcome any feedback/ideas that other parents may have.