New clothes, new toys, a warm bed, books — these are some of the items on the Christmas wish lists for the Season for Caring featured families. The community — and Santa — have been very good this year about making sure there were gifts to unwrap this holiday season.
Season for Caring is the Statesman’s annual holiday charity program. We ask the community to donate to the wish lists of featured families who have been nominated by local nonprofit organizations. These are families that have dealt with abuse, medical diagnoses, homelessness or the need to relocate to make a better life.
The money people donate is used by the local nonprofits to help these families as well as hundreds of other families and individuals they serve. Christmas Day is the final day in which the Sheth family is matching monetary gifts given to Season for Caring up to $500,000. Donations to Season for Caring can still be made through Jan. 31 to go to these featured families and their selected nonprofits organizations.
Read more:How to help families through the Statesman Season for Caring program
This year, the nonprofit groups in the Season for Caring program have seen extraordinary need because of rising rents and inflation. They expect that need will continue to rise in 2023.
Season for Caring money helps the agencies bridge the gaps because other grants are restricted. This money can be used for any client need, including rent, utilities, medications, food and transportation.
“It allows us to keep patients in their homes,” said Melinda Marble, the communications director for Hospice Austin, a Season for Caring partner nonprofit. Families receiving hospice care are particularly vulnerable to eviction when a loved one — often the main caregiver — has had to stop working.
Season for Caring money also allows the nonprofits to fulfill more specialized requests that would have no other funding, such as graduation gowns, funeral expenses and plane tickets for loved ones to see their dying child or parent.
Many of the featured families’ major remaining needs are items that can only be met by monetary donations or a very specialized donor who has not come forward yet. Here are opportunities for someone to step up and help, either with that specialized service or with a monetary donation:
Jae Lee, 33, a veteran who is in school to become a social worker, needs gender-confirming care, and his daughter, Tiare, 13, needs summer camp opportunities as well as mental health therapy. Additionally, their wish list for smaller items is on Amazon. (Nominated by Foundation Communities, 512-447-2026, foundcom.org.)
Juana Betancurt, 38, a mom of seven whose husband was deported for domestic violence, is about to move into a new home. She needs a mentorship to start a food truck business, as well as a gently used car. Her wish list is on Amazon. (SAFE Alliance, 512-665-1858, safeaustin.org)
The Kemokai family, now living in an RV in Granger because of rent increases, dreams of having its own home. The family needs help with rent or land and a mobile home as well as real estate guidance. The Kemokais also need a gently used car. Smaller items are on their Amazon wish list. Father Roland, 42, would like a mentor for his music. (Health Alliance for Austin Musicians, 512-541-4226, myhaam.org)
Joey Jimenez, 28, who has brain cancer, needs his home to be made more accessible, as well as tree trimming and funeral expenses. His wish list is on Amazon. (Hospice Austin, 512-342-4726, hospiceaustin.org)
Naquisha Taylor, 33, is rebuilding her relationship with her four children after being homeless. Her two biggest needs are a gently used car and a mentor for starting a nonprofit. Her Amazon wish list is almost complete. (Caritas of Austin 512-621-9327, caritasofaustin.org)
Anatole Lee, 58, who had a traumatic brain injury as well as seeing his employment as a security guard affected by the pandemic, needs a gently used van and help organizing his apartment. His wish list is on Amazon. (Family Eldercare, 512-450-0844, familyeldercare.org)
Shogufa Afshar, 39, who came to the U.S. from Afghanistan with her three children after her husband was killed, needs career training to become a preschool teacher, English language lessons and a handyman. Her wish list is almost complete. (Interfaith Action of Central Texas, 512-386-9145, interfaithtexas.org)
Leslie Romero, 33, has five children, one of whom has had multiple surgeries. She needs help finding an affordable four-bedroom home or apartment. Her wish list is on Amazon. (Any Baby Can, 512-276-8199, anybabycan.org)
Sandra Stephenson, 66, is on dialysis and has been losing her vision. She needs help with many home improvements including new floors, kitchen, electrical work, painting inside and out, a new deck, fencing and landscaping. Her wish list is on Amazon. (Interfaith Action of Central Texas, 512-386-9145, interfaithtexas.org)
Sheri Harvey, 79, has debilitating pain from arthritis. She needs a geriatric care manager. She and her 52-year-old son, Scott, need a financial adviser, legal advice on an eviction and help finding a new place to live for Scott. Their wish list is on Amazon. (AGE of Central Texas, 512-649-2211, ageofcentraltx.org)
Araceli Ramirez, 49, has stage 4 breast cancer and is cared for by her 22-year-old son, Jesus. Her biggest request is a second opinion. She also has many home repair needs, including new floors, redone bathrooms and kitchen, painting, landscaping, and fencing. Their wish list is on Amazon. (Breast Cancer Resource Center, 512-524-2560, bcrc.org)
How to donate to Season for Caring
Find the daily coupon in print on Page 8E or go to statesman.com/seasonforcaring. Through Christmas Day, $500,000 in donations will be matched by the Sheth family.
To donate:Use the form below or click here: https://statesmansfc.kimbia.com/statesmanseasonforcaring
Update on Youtube Inspirational Christmas Quotes
Merry Christmas to all!
💞 Subscribe to my channel: http://www.youtube.com/c/TheJohnos
💞Connect on FB: https://www.facebook.com/celyn.johnso…