Thursday, December 11, 2008

The eyes of a child

Several weeks ago the store that I work at "adopted" children from a local women's shelter for the holidays. Each department within the store was given a name, age and sizes and provided with a list of things that they wanted. Well let me tell you the list was pretty high tech for a bunch of underprivileged kids. Things like MP3 players and IPODS. One child even asked for a bike. Of course there was the usual stuff like sweaters and jeans, but all the same I felt a bit tiffed that we were not asked if we wanted to do this, just told you are. I came right out and told my co-worker that I wasn't going to do it because I had my own family to buy for and finances are always tight in my house. Of course in the end I did buy her a blouse and pants and helped pick out some other stuff with money that was collected from those who didn't want to shop for themselves, but I remained ticked off until the last minute. The last minute when I walked into the room where the store had gathered up all the gifts to take to the kids. There in front of me was C H R IS T M A S.....Brightly colored packages of all shapes and sizes. Some elaborately decorated, some in plain cheap paper, but there all the same. I added our things to the pile with our child's name on it...Then I looked around and there in the corner I saw it..The bike.. A little boys bike and in that moment I saw joy on an unknown child's face, and my heart melted...
This was what it is all about. Making someone happy, no matter what little bit you have, it doesn't matter, it is all about the kids...
Like Tiny Tim says..God Bless us everyone

(footnote: I wasn't mad that we were giving to children who were not going to have a Christmas unless our store provided it, I was mad about the way we were TOLD we had to do it without being asked. I felt like it was not handled right and that one person or a group of people should have been responsible for collecting for the children...It should not have been put out there public to each other as to how much we gave and who gave what. It is embarrassing when you can't afford to buy things (like a bike for a child) and yet they expect you too. I hope the store handles it differently if they ever do this again)



Blogger Carrie said...

I wouldn't like that either. A few years ago I worked for the salvation army and some stuff just didn't seem right. It kinda pissed me off.

December 11, 2008 at 10:07 PM  
Blogger Aunt Pitty Pat's said...

I hear you ... that was not right. We all have a budget!!! we know what we can afford to give. But I know we all do the best we can. I also know there I times I could have done better... but thats just the way it works sometimes.
It would have been nicer to have put a small note in with your pay check.. and a list of needed items. Then you could have sent back which one you chose. Just like me with my little stars this week. I chose the ones I wanted to purchase for ... I felt good about knowing how much I could spend.
Happy Holidays and thank you for stopping by my blog :)

December 12, 2008 at 8:50 AM  
Blogger Grace said...

I think I would have felt miffed, too! I'm very generous, but I don't like to be told what to do, when to do it, or how (when it comes to these sorts of things!) LOL

We have an Angel Tree sort of thing at my local Curves...and I usually try to pick 1-2 children a year to buy for. What shocked me most were the adults..and the things the adults wanted!

Let me say I understand that there are needy adults..and I'm totally about supporting them too...but when I looked at what they wanted - jackets and other large, big ticket items - I had a similar response to yours! It was like, OK...I want to help...but I don't have the resources to buy a stranger something larger and more expensive than I would - say - my mom!

In the end, it's all about the intention behind the gift :) I'm sure your recipients will all be so thrilled!

Happy Yule!

December 12, 2008 at 12:40 PM  
Blogger kim said...

That is what I dislike about corporate america. I donate throughout the year. I also do private things. There are certain charities that I prefer to donate to.

It should have been handled privately. No one need to know how much each gave. We are in a recession and many struggle to provide some sort of Christmas for their own.

I can totally understand how you feel.

December 23, 2008 at 10:38 AM  

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