Holiday adoption program under way

    REGIONAL – The annual holiday adoption program is under way with a number of needy families hoping to receive some assistance this holiday season.
    Administration of the adoption program is being handled by West Central Community Action, and the Harlan Newspapers remains actively involved in promoting and publicizing the adoptions.
    Applications for families wishing to be adopted will be accepted now until December 6.  Children 18 and under, along with elderly ages 65+, who are at or below 175 percent poverty level (or LIHEAP eligible) may apply.  The program is especially designed to help families who are facing financial hardships and are unable to afford a Christmas dinner or new toys and warm clothing for their children.
    Families who are interested in applying are advised to contact WCCA as soon as possible.
    The holiday adoption program hopes to address the needs of low-income families and individuals during the holidays and winter season.
    For those donating, they can deliver gifts to WCCA’s Outreach Office on the designated drop-off day, Monday, Dec. 16 between 8 a.m.-4:30 p.m.
    Distribution of gifts to families will be held on Tuesday, Dec. 17 – families can pick them up anytime from 8 a.m.-4:30 p.m.
    If these dates don’t work, special arrangements can be made by calling 755-5602.
    Each week in the Harlan Newspapers, adoptees are listed by number. Donors will then choose by number which family or individual they wish to adopt.
    According to WCCA, donors are asked to choose the number of the family or individual they wish to adopt and then contact West Central as to what the family would like. How much is spent on the individual or family being adopted is left to the discretion of the donor, Matthews said.
    Individuals wishing to make cash contributions instead of adopting a family are asked to bring cash or a check to the WCCA Outreach office at  1017 7th Street, Harlan, Ia. 51537. These contributions are pooled together and used for families/individuals and are recorded in the newspaper as anonymous.
    The adoption program is encouraging businesses and groups to adopt a family (or multiple families) rather than sponsor a toy drive.
    Dena Matthews, who coordinates the adoption program for WCCA, said, “We are also asking the same as last year; groups thinking of doing a toys-for-tots drive or a toy collection to adopt a family instead or collect items for older children, as families with young children generally get adopted first because it is harder to shop for teens and tweens.
    “Instead of a toy collection, perhaps a gift card drive for the older children (gift cards for clothing stores, fast food or restaurants, bowling alley, movie theater, Itunes, etc.) would help tremendously.
    Following is the first list of the holiday season.  Listed are those needing adoption:
To be Adopted
1)    Female, 1
2)    Female, 11
3)    Female, 5; Female, 4; Male, 2; Female, 8 months
4)    Female, 11; Male, 3 months
5)    Male, 7; Female, 6
6)    Female, 16; Male, 13
7)    Male, 9; Male, 5
8)    Female, 15; Female, 12; Male, 10; Male, 6
9)  Male, 7; Male, 4 months
10)  Male, 8
11)  Female, 12; Male, 10; Male, 8; Female, 6
12)  Male, 13; Female, 8; Female, 4
13)  Male, 17; Male, 14
14)  Female, 67
15)  Female, 9; Male, 6
16)  Female, 74

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