The beauty of the Adopt-A-Family program is that it is so personalized and donors know their efforts and support are going to a specific family. This extraordinary effort, which goes beyond a typical cash donation, creates feelings of attachment for many donors and it is understandable that they would want to hear back directly from their family as opposed to simply receiving a general thank-you from us at the Children’s Foundation.
While we do send a message with the gifts asking all families to send a thank you to their donor, they are not always able to do so. We appreciate this may be disappointing for donors, however we encourage them to try to understand why that may be the case.
For many of the families who are referred by social agencies, parents are dealing with such things as mental health issues, trauma, literacy problems, language barriers, or most often, living in "survival mode”. For families in extreme poverty, they may be living in constant crisis around their basic needs. They may be trying to figure out where their next meal is coming from, or may be moments away from being homeless or having their utilities cut off. When in survival mode, unfortunately a thank you card does not make the top of their list.
Pride is also a big factor for families. Many do not actively seek out help for Christmas and are ashamed at being in their situation. It is their worker who encourages them as they know how significant the need is for the family. Sitting down to write a thank you card is another reminder that they could not provide Christmas for their own children and it is often easier and healthier for them to avoid it as it can bring up strong feelings of shame and depression.
We trust that the spirit of joy in giving is not truly diminished for our donors as their support and generosity is very much appreciated whether spoken or unspoken.
To read excerpts from Thank You cards, please CLICK HERE.