Helping Children Find Holiday Cheer During a Recession
1 year ago
It's not all about gift giving
Casper Lassiter, campus director of the Children’s Aid Society at the Dunlevy Milbank Center, is inspired every day by the positivity of the children and families he works with. Raised in less fortunate circumstances, similar to the families he now facilitates, Lassiter says the Children’s Aid Society saved his life. It taught him appreciation, the importance of giving back, and mostly, how to find joy in the little things in life. It's those small things, like conversation and companionship, that place smiles on people’s faces.
“It makes me feel good because the families are so appreciative, even when it’s something small," says Lassiter who joined the Children's Aid Society when he was just nine years old. "With the kids, it’s our volunteers just holding their hands and having interaction with them that leave a positive experience.”
With the holiday season among us, the Children's Aid Society organizes holiday parties, food drives and gifts for those down on their luck. They understand the importance of making someone feel appreciated during a time of giving, even when people may not have anything to give this season.
“We definitely try to keep a pretty positive and family-orientated atmosphere year round,” says executive director of the Hale House Center Annie Murphy. “I think how that translates into the holiday season is that we try to keep things festive. It’s important for families to keep their spirit and morale up, for them to feel like they have the means to provide something nice to their family over the holiday. That can be tough when you’re talking about a homeless family with not a lot of resources.”