Wednesday, December 31, 2014

Thanks for a Wonderful 2014

As we all look forward to ringing in 2015 at the stroke of midnight, HSP would like to take a look back and thank all of those who helped us make a difference in the lives of those in need this year. 2014 was an exciting and memorable year for HSP marked by growth in our programs, allowing us to better serve the neediest members of our community.

Our Senior Citizen Project continued to provide nutritious groceries and other life-altering services to seniors every month thanks to the heartfelt support of our volunteers and donors. We were even able to expand the program’s enrollment to 125 thanks to the generosity of all those who participated in the Matching Campaign sponsored by Allured Business Media. The Children’s Birthday Project continued to grow as 925 underprivileged children received the special recognition all children deserve on their birthdays. The summer saw the success of our Feed the Kids program and School Supply Drive. Of course, the year ended on a high note with HSP’s largest Christmas Offering ever with 2014 children receiving Christmas gifts. This is not to mention the memorable events along the way such as participating in the DuPage Human Race, Ribfest, the Last Fling, the annual Stamp out Hunger Food Drive, and more. None of what HSP accomplished in 2014 could have been done without the enduring and indispensable assistance of all of our supporters. Thank you for continuing to enable HSP to be a source of hope and relief for those who need us most. We wish you all and happy, blessed, and fruitful 2015. 

Tuesday, December 30, 2014

The Holiday Season Comes to a Close

Christmas has come and gone, and HSP’s annual Christmas Offering has ended on a very successful note. Though the final number has not yet been calculated, we were able to provide gifts to 125 seniors and 2,014 children this holiday season. Additionally, 150 families each received 220 pounds of groceries, and over 370 families received holiday meal boxes and other food donations with their children’s Christmas gifts.
            As always, HSP is so grateful for all of the help we have received during the busy holiday season. Our Christmas Offering would not be the success it was if not for the warm hearts of our loving supporters. We appreciate our hard working volunteers, who assisted with driving, delivering, and loading of gifts and food, and our generous donors, who provided us with our Giving Tree gifts as well toy, book, and food drives. We are so thankful for all you have done. Thank you for helping us serve so many in our community through our Christmas Offering.

Monday, December 29, 2014

HSP’s New Van

The Humanitarian Service Project would like to unveil an exciting Christmas present it received this year, our new van. This van was purchased with grant funding from the UPS Foundation, the Wakerly Family Foundation, and a donation from one of our longtime volunteers. This new van will be used to make “pick-ups” and deliveries which are critical to the success of our programs allowing us to serve impoverished seniors, children, and families. This will enable HSP to retire one of our vans, which has become very well-worn from fulfilling its duties over the years. We wish to extend a huge “thank you” to the our friends at the UPS locations in Carol Stream and Elk Grove Village, the Wakerly Family Foundation, and our steadfast supporter  for their generosity in helping us purchase this wonderful, and much needed, van.

Wednesday, December 24, 2014

And Now, a Christmas Poem...

Twas the night before Christmas
And all through HSP
The staff members were so grateful
And the recipients were filled with glee.
The Giving Trees were distributed by volunteers with great care
And much joy and gratitude quickly filled the air.
Nearly 2,000 children will have gifts Christmas morn
All thanks to our donors, generous and warm.
In addition, our seniors experienced harmony and delight
As all 125 of them received gifts and groceries. All right!
Our volunteer drivers took time out of their days
To deliver these goodies in their own personal sleighs.
But HSP couldn’t have managed this alone
We extend thanks to our volunteers for the generosity they have shown.
Food sorting, gift wrangling, and loading up cars
To all those who helped, you are the true stars.
And so from all of us at HSP as the holiday comes to light

“Merry Christmas to all and to all a good night!”

Tuesday, December 23, 2014

Thank You to Our Donors!

Christmas is just days away, and HSP is entering the final stages of our Christmas Offering. It has been a great success, and we would like to take this time to thank all the donors who have made contributions. Over the last few days, HSP has received many donations for the sake of the children, families, and seniors we serve. Many donors ran “food drives”—such as the carload we received Friday from the Hope Evangelical Lutheran Church. Others provided assistance with the “Giving Trees” for children and seniors—50 of which were donated by COD Cares Friday night. Additionally, we have received generous monetary and toy donations from groups such as Just Energy, Living Lord Lutheran Church, and the Marquardt School District. As always, we are so grateful for all our donors do for us. It’s always a comfort to see people so caring and generous, especially during the holiday season. On behalf of all of us here at HSP, we wish you all Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year!

Monday, December 22, 2014

A Very Merry Christmas to our Volunteers!

With Christmas just days away, HSP is in the final stretch of our Christmas Offering. As needy families continue to call in, we will be distributing gifts to children all the way up to Christmas Eve. None of this would be possible without the help of the volunteer groups who have graciously given their time to make these final few days of the Christmas Offering a success. We were joined by volunteers from Katherine Frank Creative, Junior Achievement, Clarke, College of DuPage, South Outreach, and we also have had the support of many individual volunteers all giving their time to setup for distributions, distribute gifts, and sort toys and food. HSP wishes to thank all of your for helping us reach so many families in need!

Friday, December 19, 2014

Some Extra Help This Holiday Season

As our eventful week winds down, HSP is still busy distributing gifts to the families on our Christmas Waiting List. And while that is going on, we would like to take a moment to say thank you to some of our wonderful groups who have made generous donations. The first is Shinnyo-En Chicago who put together 24 personal care kits for the seniors in our SCP. They donated various hygiene items and assembled the kits as a service project. They even took the time to write some thoughtful notes for our seniors. Shinnyo-En has done service projects for our Christmas Offering and SCP the last 2 years years, and we are so grateful for their generous donation.

            Additionally, HSP would like to extend a huge thank you to members of the Science of Spirituality Center. This group put together a unique food drive for the sake of the families and seniors we serve. Members were given the opportunity to “shop” for the food and toy items while at the service center. Afterwards, all the food, toys, and money raised was donated to HSP! We are so appreciative to them for all their support during this holiday season.

Thursday, December 18, 2014

Christmas Keeps on Coming at HSP!

HSP has been busy this past week with our gift and food distributions, and we’re not done yet! Today, volunteer drivers came by to pick up and deliver Christmas gifts to the 125 needy seniors in our program! Thanks to the generosity of our donors, all of the seniors enrolled in our Senior Citizen Project received special Christmas gifts today. HSP extends a huge thank you to our drivers, donors, and to Ginna, our dedicated “Secret Pal” coordinator, who continues to help out by organizing all of the seniors’ Christmas gifts.

But it’s not just the seniors who received packages of Christmas joy today. HSP also started distributing gifts to the needy families on our Christmas waiting list! Today, tomorrow, and next week, families on that list will be picking up gifts and even some winter clothes for their children. As always, thank you so much to all who donated gifts. Your support continues to allow us to bring Christmas joy to those who deserve it most.

Wednesday, December 17, 2014

Army Trail and Lake Park Elementary Students Receive Christmas Gifts

Throughout this week and next week there are hundreds of underprivileged families who will be picking up Christmas gifts and groceries at HSP’s Center. Yesterday and today, we also had the pleasure of spreading holiday cheer by distributing Christmas gifts to children at Army Trail and Lake Park Elementary schools in Addison. In total, 235 children at these schools received at least 3 Christmas gifts. We wish to thank the friends of HSP who volunteered their time to help us distribute these gifts, and everyone who donated to make this distribution possible!

Tuesday, December 16, 2014

Christmas Offering Continues

Our Christmas Offering continued today with a second round of gift distributions. Another 150 needy families were provided with Christmas gifts for their children—at least 3 gifts for each child between the ages of 2 and 15! More than 50 people volunteered their time and resources to come help us out here at HSP by distributing and loading groceries and gifts. We truly appreciate all the support of our donors, volunteers, and the community in serving so many in need. HSP’s Offering will continue throughout Christmas Eve.

Monday, December 15, 2014

HSP’s Christmas Offering Begins!

On Saturday, HSP’s Christmas Offering started off with a bang as we distributed Christmas Gifts and more than 16 tons of groceries to 150 needy families. Each family received 2 boxes of fresh produce, 4 boxes of non-perishables, 7 selections of frozen meat, at least 4 loaves of bread, and a turkey. Every child in these families between the ages of 2 to 15 also received a minimum of 3 Christmas gifts! More than 90 volunteers donated their time on Saturday to help us distribute all of these groceries and gifts. We wish to thank all these volunteers, and the countless other individuals who have generously given either their time or resources to help make our Christmas Offering successful. We will be distributing Christmas gifts to more than 1000 other children through next week!

Friday, December 12, 2014

Christmas Offering Begins Tomorrow

The exciting and busy week here at HSP continues with our final preparations today for the start of our Christmas Offering! Tomorrow, HSP will once again be serving 150 families with Christmas gifts and 250 pounds of groceries apiece! Throughout the day, these families will be stopping by HSP to pick up these much needed groceries and wonderful gifts!

            In order to make sure everything is ready for tomorrow, several volunteer groups have come to HSP today to help us out. Volunteers from UPS Supply Chain Solutions, Kindercare, and Staples Advantage came to lend a hand sorting fresh produce, bread, gifts, and assisted with any other prep work needed. We are so thankful for all our volunteers for helping us ensure that these families have the food and gifts they need to help them celebrate this holiday season.

Thursday, December 11, 2014

Toys under the Christmas Tree

As we at HSP are busy preparing to provide Christmas gifts to over 1600 impoverished children, we want to take a moment to thank all of those who generously donated gifts to make the program a success. At HSP we ensure that each child has at least 3 gifts to celebrate Christmas. This would not be possible without the hundreds of “giving tree” gifts that have come in from our wonderful supporters. In addition to these gifts, we also received very generous “toy drives” from Accurate Personnel, the Naperville Noon Lions Club, American Institutes for Research, and a number of other amazing supporters. Thanks so much for helping us spread Christmas joy to these deserving children and their families!

If you too would like to help HSP serve needy children this Christmas, there is still time to make toy donations. Our greatest need is for toys for children between the ages of 8-11. Call HSP at 630-221-8340 with any questions.

Wednesday, December 10, 2014

HSP Thanks Ours Volunteers

Volunteers from Clarke and Westin
As the first distribution day of our Christmas Offering is just a few short days away, we’d like to recognize the volunteer groups who have given their time this week to help us prepare during this very busy and important week. Volunteers sorted hundreds of children’s gifts and finalized the bags of presents for over 375 families. They also sorted food and toy donations.

Volunteers from BMW of North America
On Monday, we had help from the Wheaton Warrenville South High School Bilingual Club and Westin Hotels. Yesterday, we were assisted by volunteers from Clarke, Philadelphia Insurance, and a second group from Westin Hotels. And today, we welcome volunteers from the BMW of North America, LaForce Inc, and the Hinsdale South High School’s BPA Club. As always, we are so grateful for our volunteers, especially during the holiday season. Their continued generosity and support is very much appreciated in this busy time.

Tuesday, December 9, 2014

Glenbard South High School Food Drive

This past Saturday, Glenbard South High School’s National Honor Society ran their annual Holiday Food Drive for the sake of the needy seniors and families we serve at HSP. The NHS students canvassed their neighborhoods with flyers, asking their neighbors to support the drive by donating non-perishable food items. The students then spent all Saturday morning collecting donated food, which they then dropped off at HSP. Their neighbors were very supportive and generous to the NHS students as they were able to fill 7 minivans and SUVS with all of the donations. We want to thank Glenbard South and their thoughtful and the community for their generous donations.

Monday, December 8, 2014

HSP’s Red Letter Saturday

This past Saturday, December 6th was certainly an eventful day at HSP. In the morning we had our monthly Delivery Day for our Senior Citizen Project. Thanks to all of the volunteer drivers who delivered to the seniors, and volunteer loaders who helped pack up the drivers’ vehicles; we distributed over 6 tons of nutritious groceries to the 125 impoverished seniors enrolled in the program. We wish to thank everyone who assisted us in serving these very deserving seniors.

Once all the groceries were out of our warehouse and in the hands of seniors, HSP shifted our focus to preparing for our Christmas Offering. In the afternoon we hosted more than 40 volunteers for our annual Christmas Boxing Party. At this event we sorted the Christmas gifts for all of the children we will be serving this Saturday at our Christmas Offering gift and grocery distribution. Volunteers also prepared bags of gifts for needy children we will be serving at Lake Park Elementary School in Addison. We had a blast at this event, and we thank everyone who gave their time on Saturday to help up take this critical step forward towards serving 1600+ children with gifts this Christmas! 

Friday, December 5, 2014

Farewell to Three Fantastic Interns

 With the Christmas season underway, it’s been all hands on deck here at HSP! In the midst of collecting donations and sorting Giving Trees, we would like to take a few moments to thank and acknowledge three of our hard-working interns who have done so much to help us out for the holidays.
            First, we’d like to recognize our two Marketing Interns: Frank Miller, whose last day was two weeks ago, and Mackenzie Mentink, who finished this past Wednesday. They were mainly responsible for contacting donors to ask for their help again with Food Drives, Toy Drives, and Giving Trees for our Christmas Offering. Their work has ensured that HSP continues to receive the generous help and support from our fantastic donors.
            The third intern we wish to salute is Brittany Galiardo, will finish with us today. Brittany joined us as a general intern, helping out in any way she could. Her main task involved working with families involved in the Children’s Birthday Project. Brittany also supported the SCP ensuring the seniors received their much needed groceries. All of Brittany’s efforts allowed HSP to continue to make birthdays special for the children enrolled in the program.
            We are so grateful for everything Frank, Mackenzie, and Brittany have done here at HSP. All three will be finishing up their last semester of college during these next few months—Frank at North Central and Brittany and Mackenzie at Elmhurst. We are sad to see them go, but we thank them for their help and wish them all the best in the future.

Thursday, December 4, 2014

Volunteer Update

Scouts from St. Isidore's Parish
HSP has been bustling with volunteers this week!  With our Christmas Offering and Senior Delivery Day quickly approaching, we greatly appreciate the help of our volunteers who are here to support sorting food, gifts, and preparing for our upcoming Senior Delivery Day. We have had roughly 26 individuals volunteer with us this week so far, along with clubs, Scout Troops, companies and high school groups. La Force Inc., the Kiwanis Club of Oak Brook, Downer Grove North High School, EMC, and US Cellular are just a few of the groups. This is an exciting time for us at HSP and it would not be possible without your help! Thank you!

Wednesday, December 3, 2014

Giving Trees

National Van Lines driver, Chuck Weidenbach, with
HSP co-founder, Floyd Kettering, delivering
the trailer on Monday.
The arrival of December brought with it cold, Christmas decorations, and the start of Giving Tree Season! Donations have already begun to pour in here at HSP. These donations and gifts are used to help service over 1600 children in our Christmas Offering. Every child deserves to wake up to a present under the tree on Christmas morning, and it is through the continued generosity of our donors that this will become a reality for these families.

            With the Christmas Offering just a week and a half away, HSP has a lot of work to do getting all of the giving trees ready for the big day. National Van Lines has allowed us to use one of their trailers as extra space for all of our Giving Trees. We are so thankful for their generosity as it helps us ensure that we have plenty of space for all of our gifts and donations. Thanks to all of our donors and volunteers, we’ll be able to help out a lot of families this holiday season.

Tuesday, December 2, 2014

New Staff Member

HSP is proud to welcome Allyson Armstrong as the newest member of our staff! Allyson has been part of the HSP team for several months working as an intern and we are thrilled to have her joining us full-time as our Senior Citizen Project Coordinator. Our current coordinator, Michelle, will be leaving in January to explore new adventures in Peru with her husband. We are sad to see Michelle go, but happy to have her take Allyson under her wing and help her learn all she needs to know about her new position. As SCP Coordinator, Allyson’s job will focus around all aspects of the Senior Citizen Project. This includes organizing monthly deliveries, working with volunteer groups, and any other ways that we help service the 125 seniors in the program. We are very excited to welcome her to the staff.

Monday, December 1, 2014

All Hands on Deck for Christmas

As Christmas is quickly approaching HSP is busy preparing for our Christmas Offering. We have had many organizations and schools drop off food and toys they have collected over the past couple weeks. HSP also has had many volunteers generously give their time to help sort food and gifts. We continue this holiday season to serve needy families and seniors in the community with groceries and gifts. This very busy and exciting comes along right after giving Tuesday which is tomorrow December 2nd.  Giving Tuesday is a global day dedicated to giving back. It is important to remember to give back to organizations that are close to your heart. HSP wants to thank you for your continued support in making the Christmas Offering a success!