Applications are now open for the Morinville Adopt-a-Family program
by Stephen Dafoe and Morinville Online
The Morinville Adopt-a-Family initiative is in its eleventh season of giving to families that could use extra help at Christmas.
The campaign started in 2012 when a local mom approached Adapt-a-Family founder and organizer Sarah Hall to help another local family that needed some things for Christmas. Hall’s friend could not meet the family’s needs alone and asked Hall to assist with the giving.
They decided to go one better and reach out to the Morinville Marvelous Moms Facebook group to see if the assistance could be further reaching within the community.
More than a decade later, the intake is now more than just through the group. Most referrals now come from family support workers, school counsellors and some self-nominations.
“We provide a full hamper service for families in need. Most of our families are rural based, and we work in conjunction with the Knights of Columbus and the Midstream [Support Society] to make sure families are serviced to the best for everybody,” Hall said. “We provide everything from a food hamper to grocery gift cards for fresh foods, hams or turkeys, toiletries, cleaning products and gifts for moms, dads, and children. If we can, we also like to include dog and cat food.”
Hall said the application process began Nov. 15 and that applications are available through Morinville and Sturgeon County’s Family and Community Support Services departments as well as the Morinville Community Library, area schools and churches.
Donation boxes will pop up in local businesses over the next couple of weeks, where donors can place goods for the program.
While many people support the program through the collection boxes, Hall explained the program also matches people who would like to adopt a family themselves.
“You can sponsor meals and gifts for families, or you can sponsor an [entire] family,” Hall explained. “If we get permission, we can have you deliver your gifts to those families, or you can have us deliver them for you.”
Those in need of assistance or those wanting to match up with an adopt-a-family can find applications and information on the new Adopt-a-Family website at MorinvilleAdoptaFamily.com.
Hall said one of the biggest things people can do to help this season is purchase grocery gift cards, preferably for Sobeys and No Frills in Morinville, stores that are easier for those in need to access.
With inflation at record highs, Hall and her fellow organizers anticipate greater need this holiday season.
“We’re getting squeezed from everywhere,” Hall said. “Everything is going up from insurance to gas. It’s getting really difficult, even for people who have never really struggled before. There will be more and more families that would never think they were in this position that are in this position now.”