Over the past few weeks, Shayna Walker could barely open her office door as boxes piled up with donations.
Walker was thrilled by the clutter. Walker, program coordinator for the Department of Linguistics, and Margaret Yrun, academic program coordinator for the Department of Mexican American Studies and College of SBS, spearhead the annual Holiday Giving Project, run by the SBS Staff Advisory Council (SBS-SAC).
Council representatives collected donations from staff and faculty in their departments for the fundraiser. Last year, the gifts and money were distributed to numerous families at Peter Howell Elementary, which is a ‘Be Kind’ Campus School in connection with the Ben’s Bells Project.
This year, Yrun and Walker selected two new organizations, Sister Jose Women’s Shelter and the Arizona Children’s Association, for the SBS-SAC Holiday Giving Project.
“Shayna and I were nervous about choosing two organizations instead of one,” Yrun said. “But the Holiday Giving Project was quite successful this year with phenomenal donations from staff and faculty within our college.”
Sister Jose Women’s Shelter received over $1500 in gift cards and over $1000 in food, hygiene, and everyday essential products for women. (One anonymous donor gave $1,500 in Target gift cards!) The Arizona Children’s Association received over $1100 in gift card and check donations and over $700 in new clothes, toys, and gifts for pre-teens and teenagers.
“It was so rewarding to deliver the gift to these two deserving organizations,” said Walker. “We actually got to tour the Sister Jose Women’s Shelter and meet the residents. The basic hygiene items we delivered are the types of products many women just take for granted, and yet these women were thrilled to receive them.”