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Spread holiday cheer to Valley families
There will be some families in the Valley, however, who will be
consumed with other things such as paying the bills and wondering if they
will be able to provide a Christmas gift for their child.
That's why many organizations in the Valley are hosting food, money
and toy drives to help alleviate the pressures for families this holiday season.
One of the families who have been "adopted" by several local groups
is that of Duvall's Craig Stephens, 36. Last March Stephens
accidentally crushed his right hand, leaving him unable to continue working as a
mechanic for Boeing Co. He has been through several restoration
attempts, but doctors have been unsuccessful.
Now, Stephens who uses braces, casts and medications to
dull the constant pain is hoping that his appointment next week with a
leading hand specialist might bring healing to his disfigured extremity.
In the meantime, the family's debt has been growing and Stephens
wonders how he'll provide for his two sons who are 8 and 10 years old. He
said that the children need warm clothes for the winter, (shirts: size 12 and
10; pants: 12 and 8 regular; shoes: 3 1/2 and 4 1/2) and paper goods are
always needed since Stephens can't wash dishes.
"I used to contribute [for Boeing families] for Thanksgiving and
Christmas, but I never thought it would be me," Stephens said. "I can't
believe how much help just the local churches have done I didn't know there
were so many people out there willing to help.
"I hope I can get back to work and help other people out," he added.
Holy Innocents Catholic Church in Duvall is one of the
organizations helping the family during this
difficult time. They are accepting monetary donations (include Craig
Stephens' name on the check) which can be mailed to 26632 N.E. Stella
St., Duvall, WA 98019.
The church and St. Vincent De Paul conference assists about
100 other families in the Valley, as well. They supply everything from
rent money to food and gasoline coupons for families in need, said
Bob Simpson, president of the St. Vincent De Paul conference.
Want to help? The following Valley organizations need your
assistance during Thanksgiving and Christmas:
Carnation Bible Church
Accepts non-perishable food and care packets (plastic bags filled
with personal care items) to be donated to the Union Gospel Mission in Seattle.
CenturyTel's Toys for Tots
Accepts new toys or monetary donations for the U.S. Marine
Corps Reserve Toys for Tots Program. Donations can be dropped off at the
North Bend office, 131 Second St., through Dec. 22.
Children's Services of Sno-Valley
Accepts monetary donations and gift certificates from local
businesses. CSSV is also collecting Thanksgiving food baskets stocked with all the
fixings for a dinner and gift certificates for perishable items through Nov.
22. Cash and gift certificates for Christmas will be distributed to parents
so that they can choose gifts for their children. The last day to turn in
Christmas donations is Dec. 15. People can also drop off donations at CSSV
of Duvall, 15904 Main St.. Please call (425) 788-7924 for business
hours. Duvall's deadlines are Nov. 18 for Thanksgiving baskets and Dec. 10
for Christmas donations.
The Christmas Club
P.O. Box 1087
Accepts non-perishable foods, new socks, toys, gifts and
monetary donations until Dec. 17. The group is also needs volunteers and names
of families in need.
Duvall and Carnation Thanksgiving Dinner
Holy Innocents Catholic Church
This year, families will be given the choice of having a meal
delivered to them, a dinner at a restaurant or a basket of food for Thanksgiving.
Accepts stuffing, canned goods, monetary donations, pies and gift
certificates. Donations can be mailed or dropped off at 26632 N.E. Stella
Duvall Methodist Church
Accepts monetary donations and canned food to be placed in
Thanksgiving gift baskets for families in need. During Christmas, the church
accepts food, clothing, gifts and cash. Donations can be dropped off at the
church at 15520 Main Street in Duvall.
Make a Difference Day
Cherry Valley PTA
Accepts coats, holiday food baskets, gift certificates, monetary
donations and gifts for several families in need.
Mount Si Helping Hands
North Bend Community Church
From now until Nov. 21, the church is collecting
non-perishable food to be donated to families for
a Thanksgiving meal. They are also accepting non-perishable food,
gifts, toys and monetary donations for Christmas. Cash donations can
be mailed to 42934 S.E. 173rd St., North Bend, WA 98045.
Operation Santa Claus
King County Sheriff's Office North Bend Substation and
North Bend Washington State Patrol
Accepts non-perishable food and new, wrapped toys marked with
age and sex of child. Items can be dropped off at the new North Bend
Substation, 1550 Boalch Ave. N.W., after Nov. 22. Cash donations are being accepted
at the North Bend Bank of America under the name Operation Santa Claus.
4609 Preston-Fall City Road S.E.
Accepts canned goods, toys for Christmas, monetary
donations, clothes and blankets that are distributed to families throughout the
Valley. There will also be several giving trees around the Valley. Call the office
Sno-Valley Multi-Service Center
Accepts non-perishable food, new toys, gifts and clothing, and cash
donations. There will also be "Giving Trees" throughout the Valley
between the last week of November and Dec. 18. Call for locations. The center
is also looking for volunteers for the food bank on Dec. 15 and 16 and
for the gift room on Dec. 20 and 21.
Two Rivers School
Accepts new toys and warm clothes for homeless children in
the community. The goal is to collect 1,000 presents between Nov. 29
and Dec. 17. Toys can be dropped off at Two Rivers School, 330 Ballarat
Ave. N. or at the North Bend Post Office.