by Jennifer Sierra
Liz Joseph wanted to teach the girls in her daughter’s Brownie troop how to find the true meaning of Christmas.”Our girls have been very excited about all the gifts they hope to receive this Christmas, as most second and third graders are. We wanted to teach them that it feels good to give as well as receive and wanted to give them perspective to see that not all kids receive expensive gifts, in fact some receive nothing at all.” Brownie lessons teach the girls about a “Circle of Caring”, meaning those closest in their circle are family and friends they care about but it also extends to caring about those in their neighborhood and the entire world.
“We decided to do two “giving” projects with the girls this year: one to make a connection to our neighborhood and one to make a connection to another part of the world,” Liz added. “We packed a shoe box of gifts to donate to a child in need in another country through the program Operation Christmas Child, and we learned about a struggling family in Bellevue that we decided to adopt for our neighborhood connection. We have kept the family anonymous, since they have children in the same grade and class as some of our girl scouts, but we told the girls about the family, and explained their difficult financial situation, and told the girls that we were going to do some things to help this family during the holidays.” The Brownie Troop 2177 will be holding a food drive outside of Bellevue Kroger this Saturday, November 21st from 12-1pm to collect food donations for the family. They will also have drop boxes positioned at Ball Embroidery and Circle of Hope Artisans, both located on Fairfield Avenue, for anyone who would like to make donations. The girl scouts and their family members are also making donations by going through their own clothes and toys to donate items. The local family they are collecting for consists of a mom, a dad, 2 girls ages 7 and 8, and a 15 year old boy. The girls wear sizes 8-10, and 10-12 and the boy wears a men’s large, or a 32/34 pants. The dad wears size 36/34 pants and 1x-2x shirts and mom wears size 16 pants and x-large shirts. The girls are especially in need of winter coats and winter clothes. Other items needed for the family are canned or nonperishable foods, new or used clothing, new or used toys, blankets, sheets, towels, gift cards or monetary donations.
Liz Joesph said, “Basically, the short version of the family’s situation is that the mom was injured and was out of work for 6 months. The dad tried to support the family on one income but between daily living and medical bills they drained every account during this time. Now they are facing eviction from their home, and repossession of their car. They have no extra money for anything so we would like to do as much as we can to give them a nice Christmas at least.”
Liz also informed us that there is usually an opportunity through Grandview Elementary for families to sponsor local children in need for Christmas as well. That program is run by Rob Sanders in the Family Resource Center,
The Bellevue Girl Scout Brownie Troop 2177 and leaders are: Liz Joseph and Jenn Owens, girls are Olivia Joseph, Zoe Owens, Kylee Scheher, Hanna McIntyre, Alyssa Thompson, Addison Crawford, Chloe Meyers, Kayla Woodward, and Brianna Trent.