Lakefield Youth Unlimited (LYU) is holding their annual Christmas Gift Card Drive to support local families and provide gifts for local youth this holiday season. LYU is asking for donations of $25 Gift Cards by Thursday, December 8th. The gift cards will be provided to local outreach workers, schools, and community agencies to distribute throughout the community so local families can enjoy a Merry Christmas.
LYU is accepting gift cards in increments of $25.00 from stores that provide items for children and youth 0-18 years old (no grocery gift cards please). Please remember to support your local businesses!
Last Christmas, LYU was able to support 50 students in the village and surrounding area by equipping parents with $50.00 in gift cards to provide their children a present to open on Christmas morning.
This Fall, local community support organizations have seen an increase in service and need. Feed Ontario (feedontario.ca) reported a 10% increase at Ontario food banks from April 1, 2020 to March 31, 2021 (the largest single year increase since 2009). According to a Kawartha411.ca article, Feed Ontario also reported that “social assistance program recipients received $646-$1,422 less income than needed to simply reach the poverty line each month”. This creates a bleak outlook for those struggling amidst high inflation rates and increased cost of living.
Over the past 19 years, the partnerships that LYU have created with both Lakefield Elementary Schools and the Lakefield Community Foodbank have focused on supporting those in need without doubling or depleting resources.
“The Gift Card Drive supports people in our community, like a single mother of four who works two jobs to provide as best she can the daily items that her children need just to survive. Last Christmas when we delivered $50.00 gift cards for each student and something for her, she shared that the gift cards enabled her to provide a gift that she desired to give them. It also gave hope amongst the struggles of the day-to-day survival felt by everyone in the household.” said Chris Jones, LYU Satellite Director.
“This is why the Christmas Gift Card Drive works. We are not focusing on solving the problem, but to come alongside those we serve, love, and equip them by giving the power of choice for them to choose what their student(s) desires or needs that will give some joy on the morning of December 25.” Jones said.
Donations can be dropped off at the LYU Barn at 25 Bridge Street in Lakefield. If the office is closed, please leave donations in the black mailbox to the left of the front door. For more information about LYU or to make a financial donation, visit www.lakefieldyouthunlimited.com.
Lakefield Youth Unlimited (LYU) is a satellite of Kawartha Youth for Christ, working together with local residents, businesses, churches, schools and government for the youth of our community. LYU leads and supports projects in Lakefield that build community within the village and provide key opportunities for the personal and spiritual development of our youth. LYU strives to create a safe place where everyone belongs.