What is sent to the families?
We try to send gifts, clothing, toys, and essentials as appropriate for the children and family. We ask that donors please send a small toy and new outfit (if sizes known) for each child (unwrapped), wrapping paper, tape, a gift for parent(s), batteries (if needed for any of the toys), and any other listed items the family needs. Please note: we do not accept used items for this program, only new items. Gift cards are welcome also!
I would love to do this, but I just cannot afford to purchase all the items the family needs. What else can I do to help?
Many people feel this way. If you wish, you may contribute to part of a single family’s wish list by just letting us know what you will be sending. We will try to identify another donor to cover the remaining items. You can also join with others by asking your extended family, clubs, companies, fraternities, bible study groups, book clubs, etc. to contribute to one or two families. We also have families who send items for the program, but not for a specific family, like a box of wrapping paper.
This type of contribution is fine too and everyone is welcome to do this as long as the items are new. Over the years, donors have sent stuffed animals, videos, gift certificates, and books. We distribute these items to families where they fit best. We’re proud to say that 100% of the purchased items donated to this program go directly to the families in need.
I do not have time to do additional shopping over the holidays, but I would still like to help. What other options are available?
Many people and groups make monetary donations to support Adopt-a-Family and other programs that help Raising Multiples families. We use the funds to buy gifts for the families or purchase gift cards from stores in their communities. We also collect store gift cards (with no expiration date), and use funds to cover shipping costs.
What do I need to do to adopt a family?
You can make a monetary donation to this program anytime. If you prefer to wait until the holidays, generally around Thanksgiving each year, we post a list of families on our website and a link on our Facebook page.
If you have a particular family in mind, just let us know by email (provided on the listing) to make sure they are still available. During the holiday season we update the information daily by adding new families and designating families as adopted.
How does the program work after the gifts are sent?
Boxes of items are sent directly to the Outreach Director’s home office and monetary donations are processed online or sent to our P.O. Box. A shipping box is set up for each family with a tag that indicates the ages, genders and sizes of each child. The donations are inventoried and placed in the boxes as they arrive. All the packages are tracked to insure they get where they need to go.
The goal is for item donations to arrive at our offices soon after Thanksgiving. We ship most boxes to the families the week before Christmas or Hanukkah.
How does Raising Multiples know which families are in need?
We start in the summer by sending emails to our support volunteers asking them to identify families of multiples in their community who may be in need of help. Every family is nominated by a volunteer; families cannot nominate themselves. Sometimes we hear about families featured on television programs or news articles and will ask a volunteer to reach out to that family on our behalf to find out if they need local or national support.
How is a family selected for this program?
Raising Multiples compiles a list of families nominated by volunteers and reviews the previous year’s list to identify any special circumstances that may warrant a family’s involvement in the program for a second year. As a general rule, a family is included in the program for only one year.
We then assemble a handful of volunteers and staff members who make contact with these families to develop a list of items they may need. (Volunteers to help with this part are always welcome. Contact us for more information.)
We ask that volunteers try very hard not to reveal to the family that they are collecting the background information needed to nominate them for the program. Our goal is for families not to know that they have been nominated, especially since every family may not be adopted by the end of the holiday season. We feel that keeping all nominated families and donors anonymous is very important. Although we do our very best, we cannot guarantee that every family will be adopted.
Each year we are touched by the wonderful people and organizations willing to give from their hearts to help these children have a happy holiday. We hope that you, your employer, or family and friends will consider adopting one of our families or donating to Raising Multiples so that we can continue supporting families year-round.