The Winter Welcome Program (formerly known as Adopt-a-Family) matches community sponsors with newly arrived refugee families resettled by The IRC throughout the past year. These families have escaped perilous and oppressive conditions in their home countries, and have undergone extremely difficult circumstances in order to reach the United States, and begin rebuilding their lives. Several families arrive in the U.S. with little more than the clothes on their backs, and hope for a better future.
Each Adopt-a-Family sponsor will be asked to donate children's gifts, a gift card, an educational or work-related gift, and a gift for that will benefit the family as a whole. All donors and families are invited to our Winter Welcome Festival, taking place on Saturday, 12/10, for gift distribution and general merriment.
For questions, please contact Seattle@rescue.org
HOW IT WORKS:
- Select Eventbrite tickets to indicate the size and number of families you would like to sponsor this holiday season
- The IRC will provide you with information about the origin of the family and the ages and genders of the children participating
- Purchase one gift per child, a gift card, an educational/work-related gift, and a gift to benefit the family as a whole*
- Remember to keep all receipts - we will need them along with gifts
- Drop unwrapped gifts (and receipts) off at The IRC in Seattle at 100 S King Street, Suite 570, between the hours of 9am and 5pm, M-F, 10/24/16 - 12/09/16.
- Attend the Winter Welcome Festival (optional, but highly recommended) at Showalter Middle School, on Saturday, December 10th from 12-3pm. This will be a fun event for the whole family where you'll be able to meet participating families, joining us here in Seattle from across the globe.
- Size of family is defined by number of children 18 and younger.
- Total family size will vary but gifting expectations are based on number of children NOT total number of family members
- Participants 18 and younger qualify as children
- To ensure equality amongst families, any additional gifts will be distributed at our discretion
- Want to support a family, but don't have the time? Make a donation to our gift fund and ensure all families receive holiday cheer.
- All proceeds will go toward family gifts and winter party expenses.
- Children's Gifts: Age appropriate, non-clothing item* (last year’s average value was ~$25) We know it can be difficult to figure out what a child might like based solely on her/his age alone, so here are some online resources that have helpful suggestions:
- Gift Card: designed to give the family the opportunity to shop for themselves (recommended value of $25/number of children)
- Examples: Target, Walmart, QFC, Fred Meyer, Good Will, Value Village, etc.
- Educational or Work-Related Gift: designed to promote learning and self-sufficiency (last year’s average value was ~$35)
- Examples: cell phones, laptops, ORCA cards, pre-paid cell phones, Oxford Picture Dictionary, purse, wallet, calculator, watch/clock, toiletry set, electric water kettle
- Family Gift: geared toward something the whole family can enjoy that will brighten their days and increase their enjoyment of ‘family time’ (last year’s average value was ~$50)
- Examples: cameras, DVD players, board games, outdoor game sets, functional computer
Can I donate used items?
Yes, you may. We use the terms "gently used" or "nearly new" to remind people to give items that are still in working condition and aren't showing too much wear. We hope that each family member will receive at least one new item, but your gently used items are important to us too.
Is food/alcohol an acceptable gift?
Because a large number of IRC clients have different dietary restrictions dictated by their culture, religion, or health needs, we discourage donors from giving food as a gift. Alcohol is not acceptable.
Since all refugees come from outside the U.S., are there sensitive cultural issues I need to be aware of?
For some donors, Adopt-a-Family is something they do to celebrate the holidays. While many refugee families might share the same religious and/or cultural beliefs as the donor they're matched with, it is just as possible that they will come from a completely different background. Please keep this in mind as you are selecting gifts and sharing messages. Religious gifts and messaging should be avoided.
Are the items I donate tax deductible?
Yes. The items you donate through the Adopt-a-Family program count as in-kind donations. We will send you a standard in-kind donation receipt which will list the donated items (if you supplied us with an itemized list), but will not assign them a dollar value. For tax purposes, we are only able to list the items, but you may assign a value to them for your own tax purposes. Save those receipts!
While we don't assign the items a value in your receipt, it is critical for funding purposes that you provide us with copies of receipts from all your purchases. Doing so helps the IRC meet critical reporting requirements and allows us to access funds to help refugees find jobs, stay housed and access transportation.
Further Questions? Please contact us at Seattle@Rescue.org
Thank you for supporting a newly arrived refugee family this winter!