Every year, we hope to provide for families at Christmas. And every year, we are completely reliant on the individuals (and businesses) that support our work. We only give what we receive each year, and most of the families that rely on us know that. We were so delighted to share with the families this year that Christmas was ON!
This year, a host of wonderful people (and wonderful businesses backed by even more wonderful people) enabled us to provide another Christmas morning filled with fun and love for so many neighbors in need.
Thanks to the many individuals who donated toys, gifts or the financial donations for us to shop, we were able to provide impressive bundles for 102 Showin' Love families, AND offer toys to another 500+ kids of a Prince George's County elementary school (Cherokee Lane Elementary). School administrators informed us that the students were thrilled to "pick a toy" at their holiday assembly. While we know that the toys brought joy to many children this holiday season, the responses received from just a few of the parents this year were both heart warming and heart wrenching, all in one. You be the judge.
Here are a few of the responses of the recipient families as they received the toy bundles:
Mother of four
"Y'all have no idea how much this means to our family. We can't go shopping for the kids at Christmas. It's just not possible. But this here is REAL. It's such a blessing to know I will see these kids open gifts on Christmas morning. Thank you so much!"
Grandmother and guardian of three
"You want a testimony?" I raise my grandkids. I have rheumatoid arthritis and had a hip replacement. I work as a caregiver for special needs patients. It might not seem like a lot to you guys, but when you have dependents that you work to provide for and you fall short, it means the world. I'm working two jobs to make ends meet. I'm raising my granddaughter who is 9 now and a cancer survivor. I told one of you before, but y'all need to know, I considered suicide several years ago, and it was that unexpected call from Path to Greatness to tell me that you had Christmas toys for my grand kids that I will never forget. It gave me hope. It felt like a sign that I could go on. Is this making a difference?? It's making a big difference. And that's a testimony."
Father of two
"I'm unemployed after hurting myself at work over a year ago. It's tough financially. This right here makes the whole house happier."
Mother of three
"This is such a blessing to me right now. My daughter (12) just passed away in September from a severe asthma attack. I can't put it into words what this means right now."
Mother of six
"It's hard. Bills going through the roof. You can't make ends meet. Then, you get this help for Christmas. I REALLY thank y'all. I couldn't find a turkey basket this year. It turned out that someone gave us a turkey after Thanksgiving, and we had our Thanksgiving dinner that Sunday. I prayed we would get toys for Christmas because I don't know what happens. Bills pop up and whatever you had planned goes down the drain.
Grandmother and guardian of eight
"You have brought these kids JOY!!! Only heaven can repay the LOVE, labor that comes with this program!!!"
These are just SOME of the responses. One of the kids, thirteen now, whose family has received gifts and support from Path to Greatness over many years said that she is looking forward to volunteering with us now that she is "older." One mom brought new shoes and a new pair of pants that were purchased, too small, for her daughter so that we could give them to someone who could use them. She was pleased to be able to give back.
THANK YOU to everyone who played a part in this year's Toy Drive!
We thank, but can't name every single donor. But a big "thank you shout out" goes to the ones we CAN name: Largo Community Church, Antonio Jones, MGM National Harbor, MGM's gift wrapping employees, Star Hunter, Carrollton Enterprises, William Steen, Pat Gaskins, Lily Milliner, Keisa Hamilton, FOP 89, Vince Canales, the Cigna Team, Bea Pfander, Betty Hewlett's M-NCPPC Board Offices, Hampton Inn Convention Center, Allen Davis, Largo High School, Massage Envy of Crofton, Jane E Lawton Community Center, Jordan Henson, and the folks who contributed some volunteer service behind the scenes Jacquie Woody, Paris, Nikki, T'Neisha, Aja, Mishonne, Pam, Sky, Oslynne, Frankie, Noddra and last but not least Chris Lawson. Thank you!!! You helped to bring joy to 600 homes and many more lives this Christmas ;-)
Captain Can-It has been spreading his anti-litter message to kids everywhere!
Just ahead of Earth Day, Captain Can-It swung by to visit the kids of DC General Shelter to spread his anti-litter message, “Be A Hero to Our Planet…Just Can It!” He’s traveling around the globe (DMV area first) to find superhero kids to join his effort to stop litter in its tracks.
Earth Day River Cleanup 2019
Thank you to all the volunteers who came out to celebrate Earth Day by rolling up their sleeves and helping to clean and beautify our Potomac River!
MLK Day 2019
There's usually a lot of response from the recipients of the work we do. The volunteers on the front line are the ones who get to hear and experience these responses most. I can tell you that witnessing these responses in real time is something to behold. The written word can't transfer the raw emotion, the watery eyes, the love in the hug, and sometimes the expression without any words at all. It is clear, in 90% of cases, that the act of giving was received with a great deal of relief and appreciation. Here are some of the responses we have received:
"Thank you so much. I don't know what we would have done. If it weren't for this, they'd have nothing for Christmas. Thank you. Thank you so much. You don't know what this means."
"He really wanted a keyboard so much! He's so happy to have his own keyboard now and he plays all the time! Thank you so much!"
"The kids lost their dad two weeks before Christmas. It's so hard on us. Thank you for this. This actually brought a smile to my face, and I know the kids will be happy for Christmas. I couldn't have gotten them anything. Y'all are angels. Thank you!!"
"I lost my job a month before Christmas. If it weren't for you guys...(speechless from this point)."
"We couldn't believe he got a computer! We were all screaming. Before, he had to go to the library to use a computer. Now, he can do his homework and find out anything he needs to know to do his work. It's so good to have a computer in the house now. Please tell whoever got this THANK YOU!!!"
"Thank you for the gift cards for the teens. They went shopping and got what they needed. Thank you! Thank you! Thank you!"
"It's so hard. I thank God for Path to Greatness. Everybody behind y'alls organization, I just want you to know that this means everything to us."
"All the kids were happy on Christmas. Thank you so much. God bless you. God bless everybody who gave the gifts."
Toy Drive 2018: Toy Collection, MGM Gift Wrap, Largo Community Church Gift Wrap, Santa's Gift Shoppe at LCC and the Annual Volunteer Santa Deliveries
The youngest residents of DC General Family Shelter were our latest volunteers, proving that everyone has the power to give to make a difference. The kid volunteers made Valentine cards for injured military soldiers residing at Walter Reed Hospital. Cards were delivered to the soldiers in time for Valentine’s Day 2018.
Path to Greatness, Inc.
Bowie, MD 20716
Tax ID #45-4026837
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