DEBRA KASOWSKI WAS NOMINATED FOR 2014 NATIONAL PHILANTROPY DAY
Thank you for visiting the Spirit of Christmas – Shoeboxes for Kids Page!
The story behind the Spirit of Christmas begins with a bucket list. Debra’s dream was to hand out shoeboxes to the children in the orphanages of Ukraine. All she wanted was to see their eyes light up with excitement while they opened one of her shoeboxes. Her children were small and cost was a factor – her hope was that someday this trip would be sponsored for her family to make this special delivery.
Not content to just wait for that day to come, Debra chose to move toward her goal of seeing and feeling the excitement of Christmas by helping local children. In 2008, she signed her husband, family, and colleagues up to support school children of diverse cultures that were from low income families within the Edmonton school system. In all, 120 shoeboxes were handed out that year at St. Jerome School and the Spirit of Christmas was born. The dream expanded to The Spirit of Christmas Pancake Breakfast and Shoebox Campaign with the help of Jitterbee Pancakes!
The Spirit of Christmas is going onto its 8th year serving Edmonton Schools and their breakfast lunch programs. Every child deserves a gift! Past supporters have included: Costco, Lexus of Edmonton, The Little Potato Factory, The Grocery People, Creative on the Move, Safeway Canada, IGA, Jitterbee Pancakes, Inc., NAIT Culinary Arts department, staff from Covenant Health and Alberta Health Services, and other community partners.
Each shoe box is a simple gift filled with treasures and includes must have items:
- a toothbrush,
- toothpaste, a pair of socks,
- a toque,
- a pair of mitts,
- a juice box,
- and a nut-free granola bar.
Christmas Shoeboxes can be dropped off at Lexus of Edmonton 11204-170 Street until November 27th.
Every child receives a gift no matter who they are, what they have, or where they come from. We re-create Christmas morning and surprise the children with song and gifts. Santa’s delivery is about the sharing the Spirit of Christmas with one and all. Ultimately, sharing the spirit of giving!!!
With many of the goals we have in life, we cannot succeed without the help of others. After the first year, my husband Stephen helped me spearhead the Spirit of Christmas campaign and form an incredible team of elves (volunteers) who celebrate the true meaning of Christmas (along with the spirit of giving)! I am so blessed to have so much support from family, friends, colleagues, and people I have never met. It is about the children and giving from the heart! And it supports people in our OWN backyard!
Without individuals like you, dreams cannot come true. My bucket list item has now snowballed into dream for many others. Many beautiful stories have come out of this event. For our family, friends, and volunteers, this has become an annual tradition. We have created a family in the spirit of giving.
We know we cannot do this alone.
Help bring Christmas to some children in need in our city. Contact Debra Kasowski at Debra@DebraKasowski.com to make a donation or make a shoebox.
There are a few ways:
- Your group or organization can adopt a classroom and prepare shoeboxes for that classroom.
- You can donate money. (This helps make shoeboxes, pay for the breakfast supplies, and goes toward the schools breakfast lunch program.
- You can prepare a shoebox.
- You can come to a school to help feed the children and deliver shoeboxes.
Yours in the Spirit of Christmas,
Debra & Stephen Kasowski and Santa’s Elves
We ask that you donate a minimum of $5.00