An Advent Tradition
Human Care Ministry - Giving Tree
As we continue our Advent Devotions this month, it would be remiss of us to not mention one Hope tradition dear to many people's hearts (and is wrapping up as you read this). Almost thirty years ago, one of Hope’s largest Advent traditions began under the leadership of Mary Anne deVry. In 1993, she had a vision to reach out to needy families in our community and her vision grew into the incredible Hope ministry known as The Giving Tree! After Mary Anne stepped down in 2012, Elissa Sommer took the baton and did an amazing job leading it for ten years. This year, we are grateful for Jennifer Ancona who volunteered to oversee this huge ministry organizing gifts and volunteers. We are grateful for Jennifer and ALL of the volunteers who helped this year! Without their dedication, this ministry would not have succeeded.
While much of the work that goes into Giving Tree happens behind the scenes (or in the Fellowship Hall), it is often difficult to grasp just how large this undertaking is. In addition to the many hours spent shopping, organizing, and wrapping, there are also the many lives that are impacted through this incredible ministry. What started out as just two schools has now grown exponentially. Here are the numbers for 2021:
- 15 West Seattle public schools were served, including 2 by Trinity West Seattle
- 228 students were each given three gifts from Hope
- 130 games were donated by Hope School families
- 99 families received a game to enjoy
- 67 single parents received gifts
- 61 seniors in West Seattle senior living homes received gifts
This is truly AWESOME! Due to COVID, the process had to be streamlined once again and we missed many of your helping hands. However, words of encouragement and financial support have not gone unnoticed. Even if you did not have the opportunity to purchase or wrap individual gifts; there is still time to support this incredible ministry. Every little bit helps.
To donate financially to the Giving Tree via the Joy to the World project: CLICK HERE.
Thank you, again, to everyone who has supported this ministry and our West Seattle community. It is truly a light in the darkness during this Advent season.