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12.30.2020

Treehouse Store Keeps Busy Through the Holidays

By Chelsea Woolford, Store Inventory Coordinator

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The holidays are a hectic time of year for everyone, but thanks to our generous community, the Treehouse Store has stayed stocked throughout the season as we’ve shifted from in-person visits to fulfilling orders for contact-free pickup and delivery.

Youth experiencing foster care and their caregivers have been able to submit online requests to access necessities such as clothing and school supplies, and we’ve been able to host a few special toy shopping events in our open-air garage.

Here are just some of the hundreds of requests we’ve been able to process this holiday season thanks to the hard work of volunteers and staff:

At one of our toy shopping events, a youth was shopping for herself and her two young children. Her son was holding on to an Elmo doll during the entire shopping visit and didn’t want to put it down. He was laughing and very excited to take it home with him. We love supporting our youth and the children of our youth at the Store!

Our staff get excited when we find the perfect item for a child. A caregiver reached out via email after receiving a package from the Store. She said: “I can’t even begin to describe how perfect the items are that were picked out for her. Even with just a short description, they really got it right. The amazing books on her Native American culture will be treasured forever. Thank you all so much for being so thoughtful and caring during this scary time!”

A caregiver with two girls was very excited to find two American Girl dolls that matched the skin tone of her kids at one of our toy shopping events. She told Store staff that the girls had recently been gifted dolls, but the skin tone for the dolls was white. She was thrilled to find two African American dolls for the girls.

At another toy event, a caregiver expressed how excited she was with the items she found. She mentioned she had two kids in her care—one who loves skateboarding and one who loves bath bombs. She was very excited that she would be taking home a do-it-yourself bath bomb kit and a new skateboard with helmet for the kids in her care.

Whenever possible, we try to go above and beyond to find what our youth and caregivers need. At one of our recent toy events, we had a caregiver approach a volunteer asking if we had any slime kits. After scouring our back stock, a Store volunteer was able to find our very last slime kit and sent the caregiver home with a gift she knew her youth was going to love!

During a curbside pick-up, a caregiver briefly glanced through the items her youth was receiving from the Store and was very excited to find a large Crayola craft kit! She said her youth loves doing craft projects, and she was desperately in need of more craft materials to keep her busy.

This holiday season, we had more than 130 donation drive hosts, who were crucial to making it a success. Their flexibility and innovation around entirely virtual fundraising was inspiring!

A few of our favorite memories from the season were the 1,600 burpees that the staff at Helix Sport and Spine did (1 burpee for every $1 donated to their donation drive), a virtual cookie party, multiple members of the Treehouse Board of Directors and Ambassador Board stepping up as drive hosts, and the amazing support of many of our corporate partners and their staff members.

This was the first year we had an online wish list and the response has been staggering. It was difficult to keep the wish list stocked because the Treehouse community purchased items at such a fast rate! All of the sweatshirts, pajamas, earbuds, remote control cars and DIY spa kits are being distributed to kids all across the state.

Thanks to everyone who donated or purchased an item off of our holiday wish list. This work would not be possible without the Treehouse community.

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About the Author

Chelsea Woolford is the Inventory Coordinator at the Treehouse Store. She is passionate about making sure youth are connected to the resources they need and loves working with the local community to support our mission.


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