News Center

Monday, December 8, 2008

St. Francis gift program shares with needy in season of giving

INDIANAPOLIS – While one song hails the holidays as the “most wonderful time of the year,” for many families it’s a time of struggle.

That’s what continues to drive the Gift-a-Family program, coordinated by the Service Excellence and Volunteer Services at St. Francis Hospital & Health Centers. The annual program serves residents primarily on the city’s south side.

While the referral and selection of families for this year’s program has ended, St. Francis employees and their respective departments recently began “adopting” families and collecting new clothing, small household items and children’s toys and gifts.

“Each year we identify families who have been referred to us, and while they have different backgrounds they all share a common denominator – they’re needy and often in desperate situations,” said Shirley Fox, chair of St. Francis’ Mission Integration Committee. “And in the spirit of St. Francis, our employees step forward with generosity and compassionate concern to help them.”

St. Francis employees are expected to assist 75 families during the upcoming holidays.

Employees of Alverno Information Services, a division of the Sisters of St. Francis Health Services located at the hospital’s Beech Grove campus, also will provide the families with food baskets.

This year’s food baskets will be blessed on Dec. 18 by St. Francis clergy before they are delivered with the gifts.