Wilma Gold, director of Child Care Services, and Christine
Huff, hold some of the Gift Trees. Each paper ornament includes a name and gift request.
December 13, 2004
Campus gets into the spirit of giving
By Louise Donahue
All around campus, people are searching for the right gift
for someone they dont even know.
At Child Care Services, eight tiny Christmas trees were decorated
with paper ornaments featuring a first name and a gift request
as part of the Giving Tree project.
The names represent families of students balancing parenthood
with classworkall on a very tight budget--said Child Care
Services Director Wilma Gold. Units across campus have been
eager to help out.
People are really thrilled to be able to give something
to someone who needs it, said Gold, who has watched the
program grow steadily since she launched it three years ago.
Its anonymous, yet its more personal, because
its going to UCSC families.
I dont think people necessarily realize what life
is like for a student parent, said Gold, Life is
really a struggle for these parents.
Similar projects are under way across campus.
The Christmas Project, which concentrates on gifts for children
and adults in farmworker families, also offers the chance to
fulfill a specific request. Everyone looks forward to
doing it, said Larry Trujillo, director of the Academic
Resources Collaborative (ARC). Trujillo said he has participated
in the program for about five years. Its a great
project. Were able to get kids bikes and things they could
never afford otherwise.
Trujillo said the Chicano student organization known as MEChA
got involved in the project this year, raising money to buy
quite a few gifts.
Over at Merrill Faculty Services, Patricia Sanders also works
with the Christmas Project. We had two gift trees and
theyre gone already, she said early last week, noting
that those trees had a total of about 50 names.
Another annual drive is the Toys for Tots project run by UCSC
firefighters. Bins have been placed at the fire station and
police station and are expected to fill up quickly. Unwrapped
toys may be dropped off anytime.
Donations also continue to be welcome for the Second Harvest
food drive, even though the formal campaign has been completed.
The campus community can keep sending donations all the
way up to closure time, December 23, said Manuel Grijalva,
UCSC Mail Services manager. Keep sending donations of
food or money, and Ill make sure they get to Second Harvest,
Many students did their part by donating their meal plans and
flex dollars to Second Harvest. For every dollar
contributed, Second Harvest is able to purchase and distribute
$9 worth of food.
Acting Chancellor Martin M. Chemers also collected donations
for Second Harvest at his Campus Holiday Party on December 6
and the Family Hanukkah Celebration on December 8. The Kwanzaa
Holiday Party on Monday, December 13, at the University
House will take Second Harvest donations as well.
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