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Wednesday, Dec. 12, 2007 02:55 pm

Lend a hand

Springfield-area nonprofits share their holiday wish lists

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Untitled Document American Red Cross 1045 Outer Park Dr., 217-787-7602 The American Red Cross, Illinois Capital Area Chapter, provides relief to victims of disasters and helps people prevent, prepare for, and respond to emergencies. The organization requests donations of travel-size shaving cream, facial tissues, shampoo, bar soap, and deodorant; razors; toothbrushes; combs; washcloths; sample-size laundry-detergent packets; new teddy bears; coloring books and crayons; gift cards for gas; photocopy paper; toner cartridges for HP 1100, HP 9040 and HP 1020 printers; 25 tables and 100 chairs for training classrooms; two laser projectors; six desktop computers and three laptops (processor faster than 2.0 GHz for Intel-based chips or 2200 for AMD-based chips, at least 512MB of RAM, USB 2.0, Windows XP Professional); pull-behind enclosed trailer; 50 cots, new blankets, and new pillows; DVD player for training classroom; cases of bottled water and Gatorade; vacuum cleaner; gift certificates to restaurants, movies, the mall, athletic events, grocery stores; volunteer Meals on Wheels drivers; a small photocopier; desk calendars; large canisters of coffee; three-ring binders; paper cutter; computer software (Adobe Photoshop, Illustrator, Pagemaker, and Acrobat Writer); TV with DVD and VCR; a portable PA system; locking file cabinets; digital camcorder; digital camera (6 megapixels or more); door prizes and recognition gifts (e.g., gift certificates, sports-events tickets, movie tickets, and performing-arts tickets).
Attention Homes for Youth Inc. 829 S. Fourth St., 217-744-7788 Attention Homes for Youth Inc. operates the Youth Enrichment and Stabilization program, which serves young people, ages 9-18, who have an “open case” with the Department of Children and Family Services. An open case means that there has been a claim of abuse, neglect, or both. The organization provides tutoring, group and individual counseling, mentoring, transportation, and warm meals. The agency requests televisions, educational games and software, educational videos, DVDs, VHS tapes, ruled paper, pencils and pens, and toner and ink cartridges.
Central Illinois Foodbank 
2000 E. Moffat St., 217-522-4022 The Foodbank requests hams and turkeys; cans of chili, beef stew, pasta, pasta sauce, vegetables, soup, meat, fruit, and tuna; peanut butter; cereal; cereal and granola bars; soap; and toilet paper.

Contact Ministries 1100 East Adams St., 217-753-3939 Contact Ministries is accepting donations of nonperishable food items, new toys, and hats, mittens, gloves, and scarves in preparation for the group’s annual Christmas Giveaway. (The Giveaway will be held from 9 a.m.-7 p.m. Wednesday, Dec. 19, at the Westminster Presbyterian Church, 533 S. Walnut. Bring photo identification for adults over age 18 and medical card or birth certificate for children under 18.)
Family Service Center of Sangamon County 1308 S. Seventh St., 217-528-8406
The Family Service Center provides pre- and postadoption services, counseling, foster care, and a program for first-time pregnant and parenting teens and administers the annual Tree of Wishes program. The center is looking for volunteers to work the Tree of Wishes at White Oaks Mall through Dec. 19. Each shift is three hours long and consists of logging in individuals who take cards off the tree. The tree hours are the same as the mall’s. The organization also seeks individuals, families, and businesses to adopt individuals and provide them with gifts.

Girl Scouts of Central Illinois 3020 Baker Dr., 217-523-8159 Girl Scouting offers quality programming for all girls, ages 5 to 17, to discover, connect, lead and take action to make the world a better place. The Land of Lincoln Council seeks volunteers to serve as troop leaders, trainers, and other general office help. Additionally, the Girl Scouts seek financial assistance for girls to attend summer camp and funding to repair tent units and camp buildings at camp facilities. Other requests include batteries, battery-operated lanterns, brooms and dust mops, cleaning supplies, a color printer, digital ear thermometers, duct tape, flashlights, life jackets, liquid hand soap, paper towels and other paper products, pie irons, power strips, roasting forks, and toasters.
Habitat for Humanity of Sangamon County 320 N. Dirksen Pkwy., 217-523-2710 Habitat provides affordable housing. The organization seeks corporate sponsorships, good for a one-year commitment to all six Habitat homes in 2008. For information, contact the organization’s development director at 217-523-2710, ext. 13. Habitat also seeks cash donations or pledges to cover construction costs, as well as professional service and material donations, heavy-equipment donations (backhoe, delivery truck, and construction truck), tool donations (power tools, hammers, and tape measures), food gift cards, donations and volunteers for ReStore, home-repair center gift cards, and updated office equipment. Volunteers are also needed to serve on a steering committee for one family/one build, including a project coordinator, volunteer coordinator, food coordinator, marketing or PR coordinator, and a nurturer for a homeowner.

Lutheran Child & Family Services 431 S. Grand Ave. W., 217-544-4631 Lutheran Child and Family Services of Illinois is a leading provider of a comprehensive range of high-quality community-based and innovative social services responsive to the needs of children and families. The Springfield office provides foster care, adoption services, and family counseling. The organization requests two new TVs and DVD players for its visit room; gift cards for clients to Wal-Mart, Target, and ShopKo; diapers and wipes; a microwave; a toaster oven; a refrigerator; a digital camera, docking station, and printer combo; laptop computers; new conference-room furniture with vinyl or leather chairs; and a new sofa and loveseat for the visit room.
M.E.R.C.Y. Communities Inc. 108 E. Cook St., 217-753-1358 or 217-744-1126 M.E.R.C.Y. Communities provide housing and supportive services to foster the independence of homeless and at-risk families. The organization requests gift cards for underwear, shoes, and socks for moms and children; new bath towels and washcloths; new children’s wagons; new tricycles; gift baskets for young mothers; new pots and pans; stationery supplies; large and small trash bags; dish soap; paper towels; toilet paper and facial tissue, laundry soap; and fabric-softener sheets.
Mini O’Beirne Crisis Nursery 1011 N. Seventh St., 217-525-6800 The Mini O’Beirne Crisis Nursery’s mission is to prevent child abuse and neglect by providing emergency care of children, birth through age 6. The organization requests gift cards for groceries; canned peaches, pears, corn, and peas; cookies and fruit snacks; children’s mittens and hats; children’s pajamas; children’s socks and underwear; fruit juice; laundry detergent; lawn bags; Similac Advance; and 33-gallon trash bags.

The Parent Place 314 S. Grand Ave. W., 217-546-5257
The Parent Place Inc. specializes in teaching positive parenting. The organization requests unopened packages of diapers and baby wipes; pizza coupons; carpet-cleaning service; a locking computer armoire; a new or gently used folding card table; a PowerPoint projector; a digital camera; snow-removal service; a freestanding bookcase; washable markers; art-and-craft paper and materials; gift cards or certificates from grocery stores and retailers such as Wal-Mart, Kmart, and Dollar General; a rolling storage cart; subscriptions to
Parenting and Literacy magazines; parenting-education videos and DVDs; and paper goods (paper towels, toilet paper, cups, plates, flatware, and napkins).

Prairie Center Against Sexual Assault 3 W. Old State Capitol Plaza, 217-744-2560
The Prairie Center Against Sexual Assault assists women, children, and men recovering from the trauma of sexual violence through a range of services that includes counseling, medical and legal advocacy, prevention education, and a 24-hour crisis hotline. The center requests children’s toys, games, and books; puppets; play sand; Play-Doh; arts-and-crafts materials (construction paper, crayons, markers, bracelet-bead kits); angels or inspirational stones/trinket items that clients can hold in their hands while testifying in court; journals; personal-care services (massages, haircuts, manicures, yoga); gift cards; a VCR/DVD player for the parent-education room; clothing for survivors to wear home from the emergency department; and personal-care items (shampoo, deodorant, soap, toothpaste).
Serving Jesus Willingly
Urban Ministries Inc.
P.O. Box 6453, Springfield 62708, 217-494-1407
This organization hosts a Christmas party from 4-6 p.m. Saturday, Dec. 19, at the James D. Memorial Chapel, 1520 E. Washington. Requests include canned goods (meat, soup, fruit), paper goods (towels, toilet paper, envelopes), household items (bar soap, dish soap, detergent, and bleach), Ziploc bags, trash bags, and dry goods (mac and cheese, spaghetti, rice, and cereal). Contact Sam J. Winger at 494-1407 or e-mail sjwum@juno.com.
Sojourn Shelter and Services Inc. 1800 Westchester Blvd., 217-726-5100
Sojourn provides a variety of services to victims of domestic violence. The organization requests vacuum cleaners for its shelter, baby bottles, pacifiers, house slippers (all sizes), carpet for the administrative wing, baby monitors, board games, sets of dishes, hairdryers, sets of pots and pans, curling irons, bus tokens/bus passes, journals for clients, sets of towels and washcloths, air fresheners, sheet sets for the shelter, purses, blankets and pillows for shelter, thermometers, calling cards, stamps and stationery sets for clients, car seats, strollers, night lights, items for childproofing, Halloween costumes, a TV and VCR for the living room, first-aid kits, ice packs, outside equipment for the courtyard, cleaning wipes, gas cards, facial tissue, suitcases, kitchen towels, laundry baskets, pantyhose (all sizes and colors), over-the-counter medications, bathrobes, alarm clocks, cooking utensils, umbrellas, children’s dish sets/utensils, hair-care products for all ethnicities, formula, batteries, pajamas, pocket dictionaries, gardening tools, Dixie cups, outdoor toys, sunscreen, mattresses, lip balm/Carmex, infant walkers, hot-water bottles, blinds for windows, fans, gift certificates for ordering meals, microwave, gift certificates in general, Walkmans, radios, books on parenting, carpet shampooer, flashlights, diapers, rubber balls for outside, sets of silverware, hairbrushes and combs, sets of glasses and cups, cleaning products, laundry soap, measuring cups and spoons, bakeware, pillows, laundry baskets, and salt and pepper shakers

Springfield Catholic Charities 120 S. 11th St., 217-525-0500 Catholic Charities provides services to assist people in meeting their basic needs. Financial contributions may be made any time; send checks to Catholic Charities at the above address. Among the agencies Catholic Charities supports are St. John’s Breadline, 430 N. Fifth St.; the Holy Family Food Pantry, 1023 E. Washington St.; and St. Clare’s Health Clinic, 700 N. Seventh St. Catholic Charities requests toothbrushes for St. Clare’s Health Clinic; food to fill the Holy Family Food Pantry shelves, food baskets for Thanksgiving and Christmas and toys for the holiday store at the Crisis Assistance and Advocacy Office, hams and turkeys for St. John’s Breadline and the food pantry, diapers for the food pantry, a new computer for the food pantry, and monetary donations to help cover emergency medications at the Crisis Assistance and Advocacy Office.

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