BRIDGEPORT–Santa was on hand, there was a mountain of toys, and children were hard at work “shopping” for those they love yesterday at the McGivney Center’s Annual Christmas Store.
“This is wonderful—one of the best yet,” said Terry O’Connor, Executive Director of the McGivney Center located on the East Side of Bridgeport on the grounds of St. Charles Borromeo Parish.
“The children look forward to this every year. It reinforces their good work and helps them to learn about giving and sharing,” O’Connor said.
Throughout the year each child earns points for good grades, positive conduct, and good citizenship. They then “spend” their points at the Christmas Store to buy gifts for everyone in their households – including themselves.
Last year, over 700 gifts were provided for children and their families, and this year the participation was even greater.
Sarah Motti, Director of Development, said donated items included handbags, sunglasses, wallets, watches; gift Certificates to local clothing and grocery stores; winter clothing (sweaters, hats, mittens, gloves, scarves); sporting apparel; electronic services; arts & crafts; building sets and blocks; games and puzzles; bikes, scooters, skateboards, infant toys and more.
A gift-wrapping station was set up at the back of the hall so that the young shopper could wrap their purchases and set them under the tree for Christmas day.
“We’re very grateful to all those who participated and donated this year. The joy on the faces of our children tells the whole story,” said Motti.
The McGivney Center, which offers after-school, summer and teen learning and recreation programs, is located at 338 Stillman Street, Bridgeport, CT 06608 Mailing Address: P.O. Box 5220, Bridgeport, CT 06610.
If you are interested in volunteering or making a donation, please call (203) 333-2789. Visit online: http://smotti8.wixsite.com/mcgivneycenter