Christmas Basket Program Now Underway!

The countdown to Christmas Baskets has begun!  

Christmas Basket Day is Friday, December 8, 2017.

Christmas Basket giveaway at St. Stephen’s is a process for sharing with the wider community.

Each year we assist families and individuals from Anoka County – including some parishioners – with groceries and gifts before Christmas.

How is this possible? You make it possible!

How does this work?

Individuals and families from the parish who would like to sponsor (adopt) a family may fill out an ONLINE SPONSOR FORM or they may print out the form below, fill it out, and return it to the parish office.

Download the sponsor form (PDF)

Matches are numbered. Sister Mary Anne makes the matches and givers and receivers only know each other by number. Sponsors bring in their food/gift donations (clearly marked with the number given to them by Sr. Mary Anne) the morning of December 8. Recipients will come in the afternoon and early evening of December 8 to pick up the food/gifts.

There are a variety of ways to participate in the program.

  1. You can choose to sponsor a family or an individual who could use some assistance.
  2. You can make a cash donation of any size.
  3. You can donate gifts for a variety of ages. These gifts are offered to families that do not have sponsors. (That’s right. We often do not have enough sponsors for all of the people who apply.)
  4. You can donate gift cards of any denomination. (Last year someone sponsored an adult or two and chose to give them gift cards – and the parish provided the food portion.)
  5. Or you can just donate a gift card to be given as needed.
  6. You could form a group to sponsor a larger family – or maybe a couple of individuals could go together to sponsor an individual or small family. (Last year a business – which includes a parishioner – sponsored a large family.) or (A family with adult children and their families go together to sponsor a large family.)
  7. You could sponsor a large (or any size) family and provide gifts only or food only.

We provide a grocery list (for small, medium or large families) if you are purchasing groceries. You are free to substitute foods for your own reasons. Just be sure there is an approximately equal amount and variety of food if you change out the items.

Donations are used to purchase groceries for those families not sponsored or for whom groceries are not being provided.

Donations are also used to provide small gifts for families not being sponsored (This does not include the adults who are not sponsored.)

New this year:  “Stuff the Bus!”

An employee of First Student Bus arranged for our Stuff the Bus event on the weekend of December 2-3. The bus will be between the Church and the School on Jackson Street, before and after the Masses.  Anyone, especially those of you who usually bring books and toys and place them in the boxes in church, is welcome to make a contribution to Christmas Baskets in this way.  You are asked to bring NEW ITEMS ONLY to the bus December 2 and 3, before or after the Masses. We encourage books for older children and teens as well as for small children. (We know that children learn vocabulary by having books read to them.) In addition, toys and clothing items such as hats and scarves can be donated.

Requests: People contact St. Stephen’s requesting to participate in the Christmas Basket program. If they are from Anoka County they receive a special form to fill out – indicating the number of persons in the family and needs/wants – which is then returned to the parish office. (If you are a registered parishioner who needs assistance but lives outside of the county boundaries, we can look up your name to verify that and include you.)

Download the recipient application form (PDF)

Deadline to apply is November 15, 2017