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“For each family that we’ll be supporting, we actually get individualised lists for them,” says Danielle Armstrong, Executive Director of the local Big Brother Big Sister chapter. “…We want to make sure they have good blankets and bedding; and then we always ask about their winter wear to ensure all of the kids have coats and boots, and snow pants …and then we cover clothing items, and then we go into their ‘likes’, and then their ‘wish list.’”

Of course, any individual or company can make a monetary donation of any size to go towards the Christmas hamper, says Armstrong, but she explains how some like to go one step further.

“We include all of [the necessities] in a list for a sponsor, along with first names of all family members, and ages, genders and size of all children, and then a sponsor can actually take that list from ‘All About the Family,’ and they go out and do all of the shopping themselves,” explains Armstrong.

Armstrong estimates that at least $10,000 has been spent so far on families-in-need.

“It’s always surprising to us at this time of year [to see] how many kids still don’t even have their basic needs like winter wear in a place like Fort St. John where it’s so cold all of the time,” says Armstrong of “the most humbling time of the year.”

Armstrong says Big Brother Big Sister of Fort St. John are always accepting donation all year-round, and if your interested, contact the office at 250 787 9674 or email fsjbbbs@telus.net.

“People always want to provide Christmas dinner and stuff, but Christmas dinner only last for one day and some families in our community are struggling with groceries year-round,” concludes Armstrong.

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