Delarc’s Self-Advocacy Group fully embraced the season of giving!  They identified the charitable activities they wanted to support and the Group’s Officers, Sarah Barreto (President), Erin Balcom (Vice President), Tina Cawley (Secretary), and Thomas Ferrante (Treasurer), communicated the various opportunities for giving.


First on the list was “Operation Christmas Child.”  This is a project of Samaritan’s Purse, an international relief organization.  Their mission is to provide local partners around the world with shoeboxes filled with small toys, hygiene and school items.  These simple gifts are shipped outside the United States to children affected by war, poverty, natural disaster, famine, and disease, as well as to children living on Native American reservations in the U.S.  Everyone at Delarc had an opportunity to help pack a shoebox, and together, we filled over 60 boxes!


After learning that it costs approximately $10.00 per box for shipping, the Self-Advocacy Group jumped into action to help raise funds to cover the cost for the boxes put together at Delarc.  It was the perfect opportunity to kick off a new initiative, “Change it Up Friday!”  For the month of November, on two different Fridays, everyone was invited to wear flannel and bring in their spare change.  On just these two days, we were able to collect over $200 to help ship the boxes!


Additionally, we are supporting “Toys-For-Tots.”  Delarc has served as a collection site for a few years now with collection boxes at each of our day programs.  We are also incorporating the toy drive into our Holiday Dance theme this year!  We are happy to continue this tradition and support children in need right in our own community.


Lastly, we conducted a “Hat and Mitten” drive, gathering new and very gently used hats and mittens to distribute locally to people in need.


As you can see, there was no shortage of opportunities to give back this year at Delarc!  In a recent communication from the Self-Advocacy Group Officers, they shared, “Thank you to everyone who has donated money or other items this month to the various drives we have had.  We are so appreciative of you all!”  Thank YOU, Self-Advocates, for leading the efforts.  There is no denying you helped make a difference in so many lives this year!


We hope you’ll enjoy these photos!