During the Christmas season, it’s important that we remember how blessed we are as a nation and equally as important, that we use our blessings to help those in need. Our holiday worries consist of whether or not we’ll be able to find the most sought after toy of the season, finding the perfect tree, how we’re going to get along with the in-laws, or if the Christmas dinner turns out alright. These thoughts seem frivolous when measured against the concerns of those less fortunate. These parents aren’t hoping to find the best toy of the season; they’re hoping to have at least one gift to put under the tree.
At , , and this is one of our favorite times of the year because we get to give back to the community and people in need. Here’s a little of what we’re doing as a staff to spread a little joy this Christmas season to those in need.
, Over the past five years, Hotze Health & Wellness Center staff members have assisted a local youth group in adopting children from an impoverished neighborhood to provide each child with a pair of new shoes. This may be the first pair of new shoes these children have ever received and it’s a great way to meet such a basic need.
Additionally, the Christmas tree in Hotze Pharmacy is special in that underneath its branches are stacks of toys donated for the Blue Santa Toy Drive. Since 1984, the Houston Police Department has sponsored the Blue Santa Toy Drive to make sure children in the Houston area each have a special toy of their own for Christmas. If you would like to drop of a toy for the Blue Santa Toy Drive, you can bring an unwrapped toy to Hotze Pharmacy before December 11 and we will make sure that it gets to the Santa at the Houston Police Department.
Last but certainly not least, this year Physician’s Preference Vitamin Store is partnering with to donate $5 of every purchase of to New Life School during the Christmas season. Founded in 2000 by Judy Kershner, New Life, began with eight children and now has grades kindergarten through sixth. Many of the children have severe hearing or vision deficits, learning disabilities, spina bifida, cerebral palsy, muscular dystrophy or sensory integration difficulties. Children with disabilities such as these are unable to obtain an education in the overcrowded Guatemalan public school system, due to either the ridicule of other students or the teacher’s inability to teach them. Without New Life School, these children are sadly denied an education and opportunities for a bright future.
Donations are critical to provide proper medical care for the children who suffer from life-threatening medical conditions such as seizure disorders. And 100 percent of all donations are applied toward the operation of the school and the children’s needs, which include: teacher salaries; nutrition program; teaching materials and supplies; building operation and maintenance; English class; speech and occupational therapy; medical care and wheelchairs.
Thanks to New Life, young children are literally being given a new life – hope, opportunity, happiness and skills necessary for life. Many of these children did not own wheel chairs – many crawled or did not move – and now they have the freedom of mobility. Other children, who had never uttered a word, prior to coming to New Life School, have now been taught speech and given the self-confidence to speak. For additional information on New Life School, please visit, .
Those are a few ways we are giving back this Christmas season. How are you going to give back this year?