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Santa’s Little Helpers, Inc.

The holiday season is here, which often means errands, gatherings, and time off school for the kids in your life. While this season can sometimes be stressful, it can also be a great opportunity to spend quality time with your family. But for some Kentucky kids, a loving and supportive family may not be a reality. But, in the midst of this holiday rush, Santa’s Little Helpers, Inc. is making sure Kentucky kids’ needs are provided with their many initiatives, fun, and festive activities. 

Santa’s Little Helpers, Inc. (SLHI) was founded in 2017 out of a desire to support foster children in residential facilities in Kentucky. Our mission is to build the self-esteem and confidence of foster children by building a foundation of literacy, personal growth, and development. In Kentucky, 9,091 foster children live in out-of-home placements, with  881 of those children living in Jefferson County (Cabinet for Health and Family Services). 

In an effort to support and advocate for the needs of foster children, we align ourselves with residential facilities in Kentucky that house foster children and help those facilities provide for the most basic needs of the kids in their care. In the past four years, we have donated 560 pajamas, 205 book bags, 839 books, and over 500 back to school supplies to foster children.  

We also serve other underrepresented populations in the community to support literacy. We installed a little free library last year during the height of school and library closures to ensure children had access to books. We partnered with the Louisville Free Public Library to keep our library stocked in the summer of 2020. With their support, and our additional book drives and partnership with the Scholastic Literacy Program, we have donated over 800 books to the children in our community.

Our Pajamas for Christmas program has a twofold goal. The first goal is to meet the basic needs of foster children by providing them with new pajamas to help establish a bedtime routine. The second goal is to help them feel safe and secure at night.  We have gifted 560 pairs of pajamas to foster children living in four residential facilities over the past four and a half years. Last year, the staff at St. Joseph Children’s Home reported “the kids really look forward to their pajamas each year.”

Additionally, this year, we launched a Christmas Tree Swap program to help families who have trees they do not want, swap them with families who need trees. We have coordinated 10 tree swaps so far this year. Most of the recipients were foster parents.  

The holiday’s can be difficult, but spreading a bit of Christmas cheer goes a long way! We believe the best way for our initiatives to be successful, is for the community to actively get involved. We are always looking for volunteers to read books to children, be a Christmas shopper for foster children, or wrap presents. Learn more by visiting us online. On behalf of Santa’s Little Helpers, Inc. we wish you all a happy holiday season!

 

Blog by: Michelle Williams, Santa’s Little Helpers, Inc.- Image courtesy of Pexel.com