Operation Holiday Completes Distribution

By: Phil White Email
By: Phil White Email

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Saturday, December 15, 2012

Saturday was a day that makes a big difference in the way some families are able to celebrate Christmas.

Inter-Faith Ministries finished up its Operation Holiday distribution, but the charity could still use some help. Leaders of the organization say they are grateful for the help already provided by the Wichita community.

So are those benefitting from Operation Holiday.

"I just appreciate it a lot," said April Miller.

She and her son, Anthony, make up one of the nearly 4,400 families helped out by Operation Holiday this year. Miller received help with some food, clothing and a blanket.

While Operation Holiday met its goal for nonperishable food donations, Inter-Faith Ministries could still use about $100,000 to help provide vouchers for fresh meat and produce for the families it is helping this holiday season.

"Operation Holiday helps a lot of people who are working and they have jobs," said Anne Corriston, executive director of Inter-Faith Ministries. "They just have very tight incomes."

Operation Holiday Director, Laveta Noble, agreed.

"A lot of times they might only have one income or they might not be full-time or they might be working a minimum wage job, so there's just not enough money to go around and make sure everything happens," she said.

In addition to the monetary support and the donations of food, the support of volunteers is also vital. Those helping out find the experience rewarding.

"You have a lot of couples coming in with their families and children and stuff like that," said Manny Thompson, a Wichita State University graduate student. "That last stop is always the most fun when they get the toys."

As far as the $100,000 still needed are concerned, Corriston said she has the faith Operation Holiday will receive it.

"There are just some very, very generous people in this community and we want them to know how much we appreciate their kindness," she said.

It's that kindness that allows April and Anthony to have a Christmas at all.

"It would be really hard with out it," Miller said.

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