Dave Wood Giving Tree branches out to cover basic needs for holidays

By Chris Hendrickson

The Volunteers of America Sky Valley Services Center is joining forces with Mountainview Christian Fellowship for the Dave Wood Giving Tree program, a holiday effort to ensure youth in the Sky Valley have a merry Christmas despite financial barriers.

The Dave Wood Giving Tree was founded by former VOA Director Dave Wood, to support low-income families in the Sky Valley area on Christmas. A long-standing holiday tradition, this year the program is being modified to emphasize basic needs items rather than gifts of toys, bicycles and electronics that have been prevalent in years past.

To accommodate the shift, VOA Director Calei Vaughn is encouraging donations of warm coats, blankets, winter boots, new socks, memberships to the Sultan Boys & Girls Club, gift certificates for haircuts, school lunch cards, food baskets and other functional items.

It’s a matter of addressing the needs of the Sky Valley in a more sustainable way, she said. 

“While it’s tragic that a kid doesn’t have a gift to open on Christmas, it’s more tragic when he goes to bed with a hungry belly,” Vaughn said.

The Dave Wood Giving Tree focuses on infants, toddlers, kids and youth up to age 18. Donations can be dropped off at Mountainview Christian Fellowship, which is hosting the program at 211 Sixth St. in Sultan.

Toys are still a welcome donation at Mountainview Christian Fellowship, which will distribute the gifts during an event at the church 7-9 p.m. Wednesday, Dec. 14. Individuals who wish to nominate a family in need can send a text to 360-793-0731, complete with the name of the family, the names and ages of the kids, contact information, size information and relevant gift ideas.

In addition to Mountainview, donations to support the program can be dropped off at the Sultan Visitors Information Center, located across the street from city hall.

“We want to make sure that every kid in our valley has a Christmas present,” said Mountainview Christian Fellowship Pastor Sean Wilkerson.

In order to support its outreach programs, the VOA is holding a “Stuff-the-Bus” food, basic needs and toy drive event at the Monroe Fred Meyer store 11 a.m. to 4 p.m. Saturday, Dec. 10, and Sunday, Dec. 11. For more information on the Giving Tree, contact Vaughn at 360-793-2400 or cvaughn@voaww.org.


Photo courtesy of Mountainview Christian Fellowship


Use the comment form below to begin a discussion about this content.

Sign in to comment