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Make a difference this holiday season

You can make a child’s wish come true and spread cheer this holiday season.

Holiday Helper is a program that gives Illinois State students, faculty, and staff the opportunity to provide gifts and parties for more than 200 underprivileged children in the Bloomington-Normal community. You can participate in several ways:

Adoption: “Adopt” a child through the Holiday Helper program. Participants will choose a child and purchase gifts based on the child’s wish and want list (approximately $40). The items are to be returned to Leadership and Service by November 22, where they will be wrapped and given to the children at the parties. Adoptions begin on October 28.

Parties: The parties are held December 7 to distribute gifts that have been collected and to interact with the children from one of the local five local agencies (Boys and Girls Club, Catholic Charities, Center for Youth and Family Solutions, Unity Community Center, and Western Avenue Community Center). In all, 100 volunteers are needed for the parties to help children with a variety of activities. Registration for volunteers begins on October 28 in the Leadership and Service office.

Wrap and Pack: Volunteer to help wrap the gifts donated through Holiday Helper. Supplies will be provided and wrapping takes place the evenings of December 3, 4, and 5 from 6-9 p.m. in Prairie Room South of the Bone Student Center. Registration begins on October 28 for Wrap and Pack. Sign up now because these volunteer slots fill up fast!

For more information about Holiday Helper, contact Leadership and Service at (309) 438-7346 or visit their office on the second floor of the Bone Student Center.

Marie Huels contributed to this article.