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Inn from the Cold reaches out to charities despite drop in donations

Janeen Webb from Inn from the Cold, Clayton Busher from Magic of Christmas, Nadine Gariepy-Fisk from Hospice Calgary (Lucas Meyer - 660 NEWS)

Money might be down, but the spirit of giving is not.

Despite an 18 per cent drop in cash donations, Inn from the Cold is helping other organizations by giving away toys for their clients.

Inn from the Cold Director of Donor Relations Janeen Webb said although they have seen the reduction in money, thankfully there’s enough toys to serve their own children and give to others.

“Not a lot extra, but just enough extra to be able to reach out,” she said. “If there is a risk that there is a child that will wake up on Christmas morning, a child living in poverty or a child who has recently lost a loved one, through say, Hospice Calgary, that they’ll wake up without a present under the tree, that’s not okay by us.”

Along with Hospice Calgary, Magic of Christmas, the Salvation Army and the women’s shelter are also receiving donations.

The boxes of toys include items for children aged under 10, as donations for those over 10 are also down this year.

Hospice Calgary Director of Child and Family Grief Services Nadine Gariepy-Fisk said the outreach is huge.

“For us, families are already grieving the death of a mom, a dad, a sibling, a best friend and in addition to that, having financial difficulties, which means that Christmas is even harder,” she said. “This means so, so much and it’ll go a long way.

“This is well above and beyond what we were hoping to give.”

Webb said they’re also on track to have enough toys to give during the 2017 birthday season, with many thanks to their everyday donors.

“We have seen unemployed oil and gas workers pull up in front of our shelter with a tank full of gas and offered to do pickups from the food bank for us,” she said “Everybody still has something that they can give.”