In 2020, Fostering Christmas fulfilled the wish lists of 89 children across Idaho. That’s a record low skewed by the pandemic and stay-at-home orders. However, in 2021, that “bubble” burst, and our need doubled. Then it kept growing!
Just two weeks before Christmas, the Fostering Christmas team met to discuss a game plan. They needed to ensure no child in need goes without on the upcoming holiday morning. More than 200 children were in need of additional support this year, so we had just days before Christmas morning. We planned shopping trips, discussed a call for donations, and strategically planned a major excursion to local stores.
Then something of a miracle happened.
With just a few phone calls and texts, Lex Nelson, one of our regular volunteers, worked a miracle. She secured two news feature stories with local TV station KTVB 7 and local publication Idaho Press.
Within hours and days, the Treasure Valley community — and those beyond it — reached out in droves. In total, Fostering Christmas was inundated with gifts and more than $10,000 in donations. And it was all because of our wonderful sponsors, business partners, and the local media. But there was more to come. These figures don’t include the funds raised by partner organizations and the numerous gift card donations made to our organization.
We could not be more grateful for the way our volunteers and donors stepped up and provided some much-needed support to children. Every year, we are amazed at the ways people contribute to those in need. However, this year’s show of support ranks as one of our top moments in the history of Fostering Christmas. Because of every donor, children across Idaho will know they are supported and, perhaps best of all, remembered.
When we needed it most, you showed us what was possible. A mere thank-you cannot accurately express how much this means to us and our community. In honor of this wonderful occasion, we would like to share another donor story. This donor holds a special place in our hearts, not only for her giving spirit but also because it was her connections that set this year’s miracle in motion.
Meet Lex Nelson.
An Ode To A Top Volunteer: Lex Nelson
Fostering Christmas started as a simple mission and a way for Newsletter Pro founder and CEO Shaun Buck to give back. So, he would do the shopping, fulfill wishes, and help dozens of kids in Canyon County. They would have otherwise had to go without Christmas presents because of when they entered the foster care system.
Today, we’re proud to extend our outreach to the amazing employees at Newsletter Pro, other local businesses, and volunteers! With their help, we’re able to support the Christmas wishes of many children each year. As the numbers increase, our hearts break, but selfless donors like Lex Nelson give us hope.
Lex has been a copywriter at Newsletter Pro since May 2019, and when she first heard about Fostering Christmas, she was ready to help.
“The program is one of the things that makes me proud to work at Newsletter Pro,” Lex says. “When I first heard about it, I was impressed by Shaun’s generosity and drive to give back. I couldn’t wait to help out.”
In 2019, Lex took on the wish list of a little ballerina. This little girl loved the color pink and really wanted ballet-themed items for Christmas. Lex says she spent “ages” in the store aisle examining ballet attire. She pored over pairs of ballet slippers, skirts, and unitards before selecting the perfect gifts for the little girl. This included a rainbow skirt and some coloring books. We’re willing to bet these were a delight for that little ballerina to open on Christmas morning!
The drive to give back isn’t new for Lex. She’s 1 of more than 50 grandchildren on her mother’s side of the family! So, Lex says her family opts to give food donations to the local food bank in lieu of giving their grandparents gifts for Christmas. That giving spirit has passed down through Lex’s family. In fact, when her parents heard about Fostering Christmas, they were ready to give back, too!
“They took on six kids,” Lex says. “They dropped off two HUGE boxes of gifts because my mom was determined to get every single thing on each list. It was great to see … I think giving back to the community is a huge part of Christmas.”
This year, Lex is assisting the Fostering Christmas team by putting her writing talents to good use and helping spread the word, just as she did last year when she helped her parents fulfill the wish lists of six children. Would you like to make a donation to help us support more foster children? You can do so and learn more at FosteringChristmas.org.