Lincoln’s longest running Christmas outreach program in need of help
City Impact's "Gifts of Love" program is trying to help low-income families this Christmas.
LINCOLN, Neb. (KLKN) – City Impact’s “Gifts of Love” program has been around for nearly 25 years, and now it’s in need for donations more than ever.
“Our mission this year for Gifts of Love is to grow our program and try to reach 600 Lincoln families or about 3,500 individuals, and providing Christmas gifts for them at an affordable price for parents so that they can celebrate at home happily with their kids,” communications director Lisa Guill said.
City Impact is a non-profit aimed at mentoring, teaching and empowering underprivileged youth. Its Gifts of Love program sets up a Christmas store for low-income families every year. Parents can buy brand new gifts 70 percent off retail prices. Guill says nothing in the store costs more than $20.
Every year City Impact collects presents from businesses and other places throughout Lincoln, as well as money donations. In 2019, Gifts of Love provided over $100,000 in gifts and served over 3,000 people meaning children and their families. This year, the pandemic has brought challenges.
“We had over 100 collection boxes out last year, and this year we have fewer than 70,” Guill said. “There’s been just a change in businesses in town on how they are working and how they are serving their clients that they’re not able to participate in the way that they normally are.”
She also added less people are going out into the community to donate because of COVID-19. She expects donations through current collection sites to be much lower.
“This need is different when it comes to helping families specifically through the Christmas season.”
City Impact is hosting a tailgate fundraiser on Nov. 7 from noon-4 p.m. at Lincoln Berean Church. It will be accepting drop-off donations and provide food. If you are interested in donating or sponsoring a child, you can also visit cityimpact.org.