A few weeks ago, our GHID team had the opportunity to help with an amazing non-profit called Angel Tree. We were introduced to the organization through an architect and pastor of a local church in Vancouver, Washington. It’s through Pastor Mike that we met Sid and Sheri Carter, founders of Angel Tree Oregon and Washington chapters (as Angel Tree is a nationally recognized non-profit for children with incarcerated parent/s). We talked with Sid on a few occasions about Angel Tree’s big event, a family Christmas party, and soon began discussing design possibilities and a potential theme for the event.
Last year we met with both Sid and Sheri to discuss our ideas, review pictures of years past and really get a feel for what the organization is all about. We enjoyed helping so much, that this year we planned ahead and scheduled a trip out to the event site (The Lighthouse Church) to help place the decor.
Needless to say it was an incredibly fun and rewarding way to spend our Friday knowing that this annual event has changed lives – for both the child and the parent – not to mention all the volunteers as well. Here is a little more information about this incredible organization:
Every child has a story, but for 1.7 million American children, that story is filled with the abandonment, loneliness, and shame that comes from having a mom or dad in prison. For many, it may also include following their parents down the same destructive road to incarceration.
With Angel Tree, we find ways to reach out to children by sharing Christ’s love with them at Christmas and by developing year-round relationships. In the end, it’s so much more than giving Christmas gifts – it’s about restoring families.At The Lighthouse Church in Vancouver, WA, we not only give gifts to the children from the parent who is incarcerated, we also throw their families a big Christmas party. The gifts they receive from their imprisoned parent have the opportunity to show the child their parent loves them, even though they cannot be there. The importance of the gifts cannot be explained. We have watched children be overwhelmed by the most simplest of gifts because, “Their mom or dad remembered them.”
Alison and yours truly placing chairs:
Cute centerpieces that were gifted to either the child’s parent, guardian or foster parent at the events end:
Our intern Natalie helping with the tree decorations:
Santa Lisa and Santa Alison:
The gift table:
Lisa and other volunteers helping make Santa’s corner a showstopper:
The children’s gifts :
Pictures of the event:
If you’d like to help in any way, please email to firstname.lastname@example.org. Volunteer opportunities as well as monetary donations are necessary to keep this event and non-profit going. Tax deductible donations can be made to The Lighthouse Church – Angel Tree, 7808 NE 94 Ave, Vancouver, WA, 98662.