Many of you may already know the importance of donations to the children in our care, but do you also realize the ways in which these gifts, given by so many generous people, may also touch or influence the receiver's / buyers life? Here is just one example...
I recently lost my mom and wasn’t handling the Holiday Season too well on top of battling a lingering, nasty cold. A rare and brutal cold front was blowing in, covering the ground with ice and snow and bringing arctic-like temperatures with it. It was cold. I was chilled to the bone and felt like my very own heart was icing over. She knew this… after all, she had known me my whole life.
She shared with me, the story behind what was in the package. While attending the United Methodist Women’s Annual Christmas Auction in Anchorage, she saw and placed a bid on a beautiful blanket. It wasn’t just any blanket though. It was hand made by a 15 year old girl who spent summers in Idaho with her Grandmother. Any teenage girl, who was spending time with their Grandmother learning to quilt, definitely deserved a bid on her hard work. The young Alaskan teenager told how she had chosen the colors of Christmas with hopes to warm whoever would receive it, all while benefiting the less fortunate youth of AK Child & Family. The bidding was over and the quilt was brought home, with me in mind.
And so, the package arrived and I welcomed it inside. The blanket didn’t stop the sadness of losing my mom. It didn’t take the loneliness away of not having her here this Christmas. It did, however, put a smile on my face that I hadn’t had in over a month. It did cover me up comfortably when my nasty cold turned into the flu. And it did touch my heart and warm my soul in a way in which I really needed. I imagined how much effort and hard work that young lady and her dear Grandmother put into this quilt, knowing it would eventually end up with a stranger while benefiting the lives of children and youth whom they would never meet. Well, a gift like that all the way from Alaska definitely warmed the heart of this stranger in Texas.
Thank you, not only to my very best friend who knows me better than I know myself sometimes. It was a perfect gift. But thanks to the teenage girl from Alaska for the gift of warmth this Christmas. My heart really needed it.
I know the children of AK Child & Family greatly benefited from the generosity of not only the organizers of the auction but those who purchased and received such wonderfully unique Alaskan gifts."
-Leah Anderson, AK Child & Family Donor