House of Lazarus helps record number celebrate Christmas through Adopt-A-Family program

House of Lazarus (HOL) executive assistant Janet Carkner and HOL client services coordinator Kim Merkley hold up some of the gifts donated for the Adopt-A- Family program. This year over 120 families, couples, individuals and seniors in need were adopted through the program. Courtesy photo

Impossible without the support of the community, organization says

MOUNTAIN — Surpassing the spike in numbers posted the previous year, the House of Lazarus (HOL) adopted out over 120 families, couples, individuals and seniors for Christmas 2017.

The Adopt-A- Family program, created to ensure all HOL Food Bank clients are able to celebrate the holidays with gifts and a meal, has been running for several years but grew exponentially in 2016.

“We couldn’t have done any of this without our amazing community,” said Kim Merkley, HOL client services coordinator, of the latest effort.

“In 2016, we adopted out over 70 families, seniors and couples,” said Merkley. “That was our biggest year yet for the adoption program. This Christmas we managed to adopt out over 120 families, couples, individuals and seniors. It was an incredible year for the program.”

Many groups, individuals and organizations stepped up to provide Christmas hampers for all those in need of adoption, she noted.

“Thanks go out to everyone who contributed to the adoption program,” she said. “You have all made such a huge difference in our client’s lives and your generosity has been amazing. The response this Christmas has blown me away. We adopted out everyone and still had people bringing baskets of food, gift cards and blankets to add to the Christmas hampers. It has been phenomenal.”

Each month, the Mountain-based HOL Food Bank serves over 100 local families. Of those clients, 40 per cent are children and 10 per cent are seniors.

“Our community has made all this possible,” said Merkley. “We couldn’t do any of the work we do without your support.”

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