Giving Tree Report

Dignity Always Matters

In everything I did, I showed you that by this kind of hard work we must help the weak, remembering the words the Lord Jesus himself said: ‘It is more blessed to give than to receive.’
– Acts 20:35

Many Hands Bring Many Smiles

For many years two Pittsburgh area churches have included Family Guidance in their Christmas Giving Tree ministry. Each church receives the first names and desired gifts of 100 plus mentees to put on their trees for congregants to take and purchase. The churches’ purpose is to help our mentors, who pour so much of their time into their young friends all year, by providing gifts for them to give their mentees. So this ends up being a double blessing for each mentoring pair.

In early December we are notified that the gifts are ready for pick-up or delivery, and soon our headquarters’ great room is adorned with beautifully wrapped wall-to-wall gifts! After the gifts are carefully sorted, the happy packages are picked up or delivered to our mentors. It’s an exciting time, and all of the gifts are greatly appreciated.

A Life Touched

One mentor shared this with her Mentoring Supervisor:
“I wanted to say THANK YOU for the amazing and generous gifts for Laura. Wow, what a blessing! She was overwhelmed with love and gratitude and excited about all her gifts. As she opened each one, she told me how or when she was planning to use them. For example, she got Hello Kitty Travel Mug and hot cocoa and she was like – YES! I need this for the bus stop because it’s so cold – can’t wait to use it! Then she opened her purse and said she knew what outfit she was going to pair it with. The other gifts were lovely and she had the same excited reaction for each of them. The Christmas gift ministry is wonderful and so appreciated by me and by Laura. Thank you!!!”

A Different Kind of Giving Tree

This year another church did their own twist on the Giving Tree idea, by asking their congregants to take ornaments with the names of suitable restaurants on them. They then bought gift cards for these restaurants and the cards were delivered to Family Guidance. These cards will be used by our Mentoring Supervisors who usually have at least one celebration a week with a mentor and mentee pair who have passed a milestone of a year or multiple years of their friendship. This will be a great relief to our mentoring budget well into 2016!

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The anniversary celebrations for our mentoring matches is an important part of supporting and appreciating both mentor and mentee. These celebrations include a fun dinner out and special gifts to commemorate the occasion. Please consider providing restaurant gift cards to support this important effort. For more information, contact Senior Mentoring Supervisor Kathleen Grehl at kgrehl@familyguidance.net

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