Mission holiday adoption program asking for local residents’ help meeting needs

Volunteer Diann Vickers was busy wrapping presents one morning at Sylvester Powell Jr. Community Center a few years ago.

The city of Mission needs help providing gifts and care packages to families for its annual holiday adoption program.

Mission has adopted 91 families for the holiday season, and quite a few name tags for each of the adopted family members are still waiting to be taken off the Christmas tree in the Sylvester Powell Jr. Community Center.

“If you haven’t Christmas shopped, the city of Mission has lots of names that you could pick up and go buy a gift for,” said coordinator Suzie Gibbs. “We have gobs of families, so what doesn’t get taken, then we have to either go shop for or give gift cards to.”

Anyone interested in purchasing gifts may choose tags requesting specific items, then return the gifts to the community center. Each of the gift tags have items specifically requested by each person, so all of the gifts will be customized to fit that person’s wishes.

“You hate to give a child or a teenager or even an adult something that they can’t use, so if we can find what they need and what they want, then that’s what we want to do,” she said.

Gibbs said the program is accepting a variety of items such as canned goods and warm mittens and even cash donations. Employees at Kohl’s in Shawnee are also stepping in to help by picking out items on about 40 gift tags, because they tend to know what children will like, she added.

All donations can be dropped off at the Sylvester Powell Jr. Community Center. Cash or check donations made out to the City of Mission are accepted at the Sylvester Powell Jr. Community Center and can be mailed or dropped off at the center, located at 6200 Martway St., Mission, KS 66202.

The deadline to drop off items is Dec. 20 because volunteers begin wrapping gifts Dec. 21.