Two volunteers at the Mission Christmas Bureau enjoy a little fun time, before getting back to sorting toys. / Submitted Photo

Two volunteers at the Mission Christmas Bureau enjoy a little fun time, before getting back to sorting toys. / Submitted Photo

Mission Christmas Bureau served more than 675 kids, handed out more than 550 hampers

The community stepped up once again, says organizers

Now that the Mission Community Services 2021 Christmas Bureau Campaign is completed, organizers can look back and see just how many people were helped, thanks to volunteers and the generosity of the community.

“In another Covid year where even more folks were left in need – in need of food, staples, presents for the kids under the tree – the Christmas Bureau and the community of Mission stepped up once again,” said Michelle Puffer, executive director of Mission Community Services.

“In 2021, we handed out almost 13 per cent more gifts to children, 22 per cent more hampers and 28 per cent more secret Santa gifts to seniors than in 2020. Our volunteer hours increased by 23 per cent.”

A breakdown of the numbers show that this year’s campaign served more than 675 kids, gave families and seniors over 550 hampers, handed out more than 160 secret Santa gifts to seniors and raised $148,000 of the $150,000 goal.

In all, volunteers put in 800 hours of work to make it happen.

“Unfortunately, our Christmas campaign has fallen short of our $150,000 goal and it’s important to note that the money received during this campaign funds our Food Centre for the rest of the year. All of the hampers and food handed out, year round, comes largely from this pot of money. With Covid restrictions and closures still affecting jobs and income, it is imperative that we are able to provide the necessities to those who need it most,” said Puffer.

While the campaign fell a little bit short, Puffer was quick to thank everyone who helped.

“We are so thankful to those who were able to support us, whether with dollars, gifts, or their time. You have made a difference in the lives of so many children and families.”