Staff from the Sylvan Lake Dairy Queen pose with all the donated items from this year’s Angels Anonymous Tree. Popular items among the donations are hockey sticks and dolls.                                Photo Submitted

Staff from the Sylvan Lake Dairy Queen pose with all the donated items from this year’s Angels Anonymous Tree. Popular items among the donations are hockey sticks and dolls. Photo Submitted

Christmas Bureau thankful for community support, generosity

The Christmas Bureau has been helping families in Sylvan Lake for more than 20 years

Sylvan Lake Christmas Bureau volunteers have had a busy few weeks preparing holiday baskets for those in need.

The baskets have all been handed out and delivered, each package packed by hand and catered to each individual family.

The Christmas Bureau has operated in Sylvan Lake for more than 20 years, helping families who are suffering from hard times.

“We help people in our community who don’t have the means right now to provide Christmas for their family,” explained Janine Waldo, a member of the Christmas Bureau.

While the Bureau does not like to say how many families they help every year, Giselle Campbell, co-ordinator for the Christmas Bureau, says the numbers are down this year.

“I think maybe it is a sign the economy is turning around,” said Campbell.

To help bring Christmas and the holidays to those in need in the community, the Sylvan Lake Christmas Bureau relies on donations and volunteers.

The operation is entirely run by volunteers, says Waldo, which is why they are so grateful to the help given by the community.

“We have a great community here. The people are so giving and have always been so supportive of us,” said Campbell.

The Bureau is supported through individual donations as well as initiatives through businesses in town.

Stores, corporations and private companies are all huge supporters of the Christmas Bureau.

On top of the Charity Check-stop, which took place on Dec. 2 in Sylvan Lake, Campbell says Dairy Queen is also offers a lot of support to the charity.

“They set up the Angels Anonymous tree every year in their restaurant, which brings in a lot of items for us,” Campbell said.

Pam Mitchell, owner of the Sylvan Lake Dairy Queen, says she is always appreciative of the generosity in the Town.

“The community have been very generous and we have regulars who come back every year!,” Mitchell shared in an email.

She added the tree, which has been housed in Dairy Queen for the past 23 years, is a great way to support the Christmas Bureau.

Every year the Angels Anonymous tree brings in a large number of toys for the Bureau, all of which were asked for by the children whose families had signed up. Popular items include hockey sticks and dolls.

This year a toy cat was also donated to Angels Anonymous, which sounded so real staff at Dairy Queen thought it was real.

According to Campbell, sporting equipment is always a welcomed donation to the Bureau.

“We try to put some sort of sporting good in every hamper we send out,” explained Campbell.

Waldo says the Bureau is always looking for more donations for teenagers, of any genders.

“It could be anything from makeup and skin care to sport stuff. Gift cards are also a great option, as many of the teenagers are asking for that now too,” said Waldo.

Campbell said the Bureau is also very grateful to the Ladies Auxiliary who help put together gifts for the moms.

“We love what we do here, and we are so grateful for the support we get from the community and local businesses,” said Campbell.

Many of the volunteers and supporter return each year to lend a hand or give a gift.

The Christmas Bureau also o supports an adopt-a-family format, which is also anonymous. In this an individual, business or group may adopt a family and look after their needs for the Christmas season.

Campbell says each hamper includes food vouchers for a Christmas dinner, gifts for the kids and something small for the parents.

“We support families of all sizes with kids up to age 17,” said Campbell.

Donations to the Sylvan Lake Christmas Bureau can be made throughout the year, not just during the holidays. Donations can be dropped off at local toy boxes which can be found at Community Partners, Canadian tire, Community Centre, the library, NexSource Centre, Shoppers and Rexall.



megan.roth@sylvanlakenews.com

Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter

Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

 

The walls were lined with toys, games and movies, all sorted by age group, to be placed into hampers for families signed up through the Christmas Bureau. Photos by Megan Roth/Sylvan Lake News

The walls were lined with toys, games and movies, all sorted by age group, to be placed into hampers for families signed up through the Christmas Bureau. Photos by Megan Roth/Sylvan Lake News

Just Posted

AstraZeneca vaccine is ready to be used at a homeless shelter in Romford, east London, Wednesday, Feb. 3, 2021. THE CANADIAN PRESS/AP-Frank Augstein
AstraZeneca-linked blood clot confirmed in Alberta

A case of an AstraZeneca-linked blood clot has been confirmed in Alberta,… Continue reading

The Red Deer Catholic Regional Schools Board of Trustees selected the name St. Lorenzo Ruiz Middle School to be built in the north end of Red Deer. (Photo Courtesy of  Red Deer Catholic Regional Schools)
Red Deer Catholic Regional Schools raises about $8,720 for Terry Fox Foundation

Red Deer Catholic Regional Schools raised about $8,720 for the Terry Fox… Continue reading

A nurse gets a swab ready at a temporary COVID-19 test clinic in Montreal, on Friday, May 15, 2020. Health Canada has reversed course on home test kits for COVID-19, saying it will now review applications for such devices. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Paul Chiasson
Alberta declines Ontario’s request to send health-care workers

Alberta is “not in a position” to send health-care workers out of… Continue reading

The Red Deer Rebels allowed four straight goals from the Medicine Hat Tigers Friday night on the road. (Photo by Rob Wallator/ Red Deer Rebels)
Tigers hand Red Deer Rebels 10th straight loss

Tigers 4 Rebels 2 Through 17 games in the shortened WHL season,… Continue reading

Meghan Huizing has been selected by Red Deer Catholic Regional Schools as a finalist for the Alberta School Boards Association (ASBA) 2021 Edwin Parr Award. (Photo courtesy of Red Deer Regional Catholic Schools)
Red Deer Catholic names finalist for Edwin Parr Award

Meghan Huizing from St. Gregory the Great Catholic School in Blackfalds has… Continue reading

Red Deer Public Schools will not pilot the new draft curriculum at its elementary schools. (File photo contributed by Red Deer Public Schools)
UPDATED: Red Deer Public Schools says no to piloting new curriculum

Alberta Teachers’ Association support school boards

Brad Dahr, 53, is facing numerous charges. (Photo contributed by Alberta RCMP)
Alberta man charged for alleged sexual offences against children

An Edmonton man has been charged for alleged sexual offences against children… Continue reading

A person walks past a COVID-19 mural designed by artist Emily May Rose on a rainy day during the COVID-19 pandemic in Toronto on Monday, April 12, 2021. Employment lawyers say flouting COVID-19 public health orders when off the job or coming into work while knowingly sick could warrant discipline in the workplace. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Nathan Denette
Risky pandemic behaviour off the clock could mean workplace discipline: lawyers

CALGARY — Employment lawyers say flouting COVID-19 public health orders when off… Continue reading

Vials containing Russia's Sputnik V vaccine for COVID-19 are seen at the San Marino State Hospital, in San Marino, Friday, April 9, 2021.  THE CANADIAN PRESS/AP-Antonio Calanni
China, Russia using their COVID-19 vaccines to gain political influence

OTTAWA — China and Russia have been using their locally produced COVID-19… Continue reading

Prime Minister Justin Trudeau holds a press conference in Ottawa Tuesday, March 9, 2021. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Sean Kilpatrick
Trudeau announces donation to Duke of Edinburgh’s award ahead of funeral

Canada will donate $200,000 to the Duke of Edinburgh’s International Award as… Continue reading

Parliamentary Secretary to Minister of Innovation, Science and Industry (Science) Will Amos responds to a question during question period in the House of Commons on Parliament Hill in Ottawa on Friday, Dec. 11, 2020. The Liberal MP who inadvertently flashed his parliamentary colleagues says the fact that a screenshot of him in the nude was leaked to the media sends a troubling message about the corrosive state of politics in Canada. THE CANADIAN PRESS/ Patrick Doyle
Canada’s naked MP speaks out: leaked photo sends message ‘anything goes’ in politics

OTTAWA — The Liberal MP who inadvertently flashed his parliamentary colleagues says… Continue reading

In this file photo, a lotto Max ticket is shown in Toronto on Monday Feb. 26, 2018. (By THE CANADIAN PRESS)
No winning ticket for Friday night’s $10 million Lotto Max jackpot

TORONTO — No winning ticket was sold for the $10 million jackpot… Continue reading

Opinion
Opinion: Canada’s self-esteem needs Trump

Well, it was fun while it lasted. For four years, with Donald… Continue reading

Harley Hay
Harley Hay: Shenanigans on the links

It must be something about my Scottish heritage but I seem to… Continue reading

Most Read