Our Christmas drive is one of the biggest of the year. Last year we were able to serve 93 children and help to ensure that they
did not wake up to a Christmas tree that was void of presents underneath it. Parents create a wish and needs list and submit it to us. We then work with various organizations, businesses, and private patrons to help fulfill these needs. Three Rivers Public Library donates an age appropriate book for each child. We were also contacted last year and had fantastic support from students at Minooka Jr. High that made blankets as part of a math project and the Beta Club from Channahon Jr. High that provided a Secret Santa gift and wrapped it for every boy and girl we served. Minooka Dollar General allows us to set up a collection box in their store. We accept applications in the fall that are due by the end of October and pair generous patrons to our adopted families the week before Thanksgiving.
Babies are a blessing and yet can carry a large financial burden for many struggling families in our community. We strive to serve these families by collecting diapers, wipes, bibs, bottles and many other things and equipment that babies and young children require. Clothing sizes for our baby collection range from newborn to size 6 and vary from new to gently used. Most of these services are provided by the generous giving of patrons from our community and those surrounding us.
Easter Basket Drive
We are able to help families obtain Easter baskets for children up to 12 years of age. We have partnered with many generous patrons and businesses to generate monetary donations to assist with the cost of obtaining supplies for our baskets. A special partnership has developed with Kids Connection Preschool, the preschool of Channahon Park District. Kids Connection Preschool has been able to donate stuffed animals and chocolate bunnies for each basket. We were able to distribute 27 Easter baskets last year and plan to provide 25 in 2018.
Year Round Food Collection
Food collection is a year round activity for Chanooka Wish. We have an After School Snack drive to provide snacks for families in need. Every Thanksgiving we partner with local business to provide a turkey and food for Thanksgiving dinner. Last year Family Video in Minooka and Davidson Farms were crucial in the ability to provide a turkey with 2 additional boxes of food that covered Thanksgiving dinner and additional food items. We will also help families at Christmas if we are able to. The local schools also play an important roll in our food collection. Channahon schools collected and donated several boxes of food to us. We were then able to partner with Food Mania Pantry in Channahon to facilitate the distribution of the food.
Winter Coat Drive
This drive is not just about coats, but about all things needed for keeping warm in the winter months. We collect winter coats, mittens/gloves, scarves, hats, snowpants, boots, blankets and sweaters. We work hard to meet the needs of every family that contacts us so that the most vulnerable among us are protected against the elements. Our drive runs from September through October/November and the collection boxes are set up at our home location and at both Minooka and Channahon Village Halls. We were able to help outfit 63 families for the cold in 2017. Please consider donating the winter gear your kids have outgrown and we will facilitate connecting your generous donations with families that would benefit greatly from them.
Spring Cleaning/Hygiene Drive
This drive begins collection in the spring, but collections and distributions are made throughout the year. We understand that these products can be an expensive, but vitally necessary, staple in every household. Supplies are distributed by request and are available for pick up at many of our events.
Three times a year we receive large and generous donations from Upscale Resale that donates all of their leftover clothing at the end of their sales. We also receive donations from generous patrons in our community. The Village Christian Church in Minooka has partnered with us to join in their yearly clothing sale. Our Chanooka Wish families have an opportunity to shop before the event is opened to the public. Needs can also be met throughout the year by request.
School Supply Drive
Returning to school is expensive for all families, but especially families that are struggling to make day to day financial obligations. This burden is eased by our program. Last year we were able to help 74 children and young adults prepare for their educational aspirations for the school year. Our program services pre-K through college students. Every August we set up a 'store' where the children/young adults can take their school supply list and pick a back pack and their school supplies. This creates a fun environment while providing necessary requirements needed to be successful for school. We have a wonderful partnership with Minooka schools so that at the end of every year we set up boxes where children can donate the school supplies that were not used during the year. We also partner with businesses and private patrons to obtain our resources. Canal Terminal has been especially generous every year for this program. We are hoping to expand our outreach this year to make this important program even more successful.
Our 2017 Accomplishments:
Carolyn L Koranda
mission & vision
WE WILL BETTER OUR COMMUNITY ONE FAMILY AT A TIME. WITH GOALS TO TEACH PHILANTHROPIC BEHAVIOR TO ALL CHILDREN IN OUR TOWNSHIP
Our community has hard working families that come into real common problems; from job struggles to life changes >>>these children in these families need our help.
As a mom, I understand these obstacles. I relate to the children of these families as
I WAS ONCE THAT KID....
If you give a fish to a child you fed them for the day, but you teach the child to fish, you fed him for life~