OPEN M Ministry Spreads Christmas Cheer
Story by Aimee Juarez
As you may know, last week was our Christmas for the Love of Children food and gift distribution. In the days following the event, the entire staff here was beaming with Christmas spirit and joy. It seemed to touch each of us equally, but in different ways. For many of OPEN M staffers, the pure bewilderment of the parents and anticipation of each child’s excitement was the most impactful.
I am always impressed by the individuals receiving gifts having such grateful hearts. First, there is a surprised look on their face followed by a big smile and a thank you.
-Dottie Achmoody, CEO
It was truly magical… the faces of belief and wonder filled the air yesterday. From an innocent child with Santa to a parents that were so grateful for the gift of Christmas. We did a great job at mirroring Christ’s love thru gifts.
-Bob Titus, COO
It was a totally Amazing experience being an elf! I wish I could be there with each child on Christmas morning.. Such a huge blessing for Summit County!
-Tela Long, Getting Ahead Assistant
For others, seeing compassion build bridges to bring the community together was the most impactful part. And after all, building bridges is what OPEN M is all about!
The entire day was a moment for me!!! The joy, the entertainment, the celebration, the blessing that we can make people feel like “people”! We aren’t giving out handouts, we are providing blessings to individuals that are in “a time of need”! CFTLOC distribution is a blessing for all of us!
-Jennifer Wallace, CWC Case Manager
It warmed the cockles of my heart to watch each and every volunteer treat our clients as though they were their own family. Love and Dignity was abound and you could feel it!
-Vikki Thomas, CWC Case Manager
2016 Christmas program
This year’s Christmas For the Love of Children event was a shining success. In total, 203 families received 165 lbs of food, new blankets, school supplies for their school-age children and information regarding our Family Development and Community Works Connection programs. From those families, 603 children received gifts, stocking stuffers, and new pajamas.
Since distribution day, many of our staff members have reflected on the impact this event had on them. Many have spoken of the truly dire circumstances of some of the families we met and the level of appreciation and gratitude they expressed. We were all blown away by the generosity of each of our child sponsors. And so many of us will forever be reminded of a child’s smile after meeting Santa Clause in our lobby! It was a magical day full of joy, laughter, happy tears and beautiful memories made! Our deepest and most sincere thanks to each of you for your donations, shopping trips, volunteer hours, prayers and ongoing support.
Kids Talk Christmas
For more information go to: OPEN M