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2 months ago

Operation Holiday is here!

by Kate Webb

For more than 60 years, generous Wichitans have come together each year to collect food and other basic needs for low-income individuals and families through Inter-Faith Ministries’s (IFM) Operation Holiday. The 2018 Operation Holiday season kicked off Monday, November 5th, with organizations throughout the city hosting collection boxes for non-perishable food, grocery store gift cards, both new and gently used winter wear, blankets, pet food, and new toys now through early December.

Last year, Operation Holiday served 13,553 residents of Sedgwick County, including 5,367 children and 2,006 youth. Children 14 and under receive gifts through IFM’s partnership with U.S. Marine Corps Reserve Toys for Tots, while youth aged 15-17 receive gifts through IFM’s Operation Holiday Teen2Teen program.

“For many of us, the holidays are a special time —but for too many of our low-income neighbors, money is especially tight, and it can be a pretty stressful time,” says Inter-Faith Ministries Executive Director LaTasha St. Arnault. “For those struggling to make ends meet on a daily basis, a new coat to fit their growing child or help with groceries can make all the difference in the world.”

Today also marks the first day folks can apply for assistance through Operation Holiday. Households must apply in-person at one of 10 application sites now through Friday, November 30th, and bring with them proof of identification, address and income. More information, including application locations and hours, can be found at OperationHoliday.org.

“I encourage everyone to get involved with Operation Holiday in whatever capacity they can,” says IFM’s Operation Holiday Director Ashley Davis. “The holidays are the perfect time to give back, and there is nothing quite like seeing the look of joy on a child’s face when they receive a new toy—except perhaps the look of relief on a tired single mom’s face when she is handed gift cards for the grocery store.”

Distribution of goods will take place December 13-15 at the Operation Holiday distribution center located at Towne West Mall (4600 W. Kellogg, NW corner between Dick’s and Convergys). If you would like more information on supporting Operation Holiday through a donation, hosting a collection box, or volunteering at the distribution center anytime now through distribution in mid-December, please visit www.OperationHoliday.org or contact IFM directly at 316-264-9303.

Learn more.

Program Center, 829 N Market, Wichita, KS 67214|(316) 264-9303