CSU, Chico News

University Supports Families in Need

Date: 12-07-2015

Sarah Langford
Public Affairs
Cindy Kelly, coordinator
Needy Children Program

Needy Children Program Celebrates 25 Years at CSU, Chico

A California State University, Chico program that supports families in need during the holidays is celebrating its 25th anniversary by providing gifts to nearly 150 children this week.

The Needy Children Program, officially launched in 1990, is coordinated by CSU, Chico’s Staff Council to help underprivileged children in Butte County. This year, 76 families and 147 children will receive toys, clothing and other essentials based on donations from members of the campus community. The council also raised $4,382 in raffles and other campus donations to buy grocery gift cards for needy families.

The Staff Council Service Projects Committee works with the Children's Services Division of Butte County's Department of Employment and Social Services to identify the names of children in need. The county social workers also provide wish lists from the children and information about other needs to help employees shop for them.

Since 1990, the program has supported more than 1,800 families and 4,700 children and given out $90,000 in grocery gift cards. One of the largest gifts this year came from local furniture retailer Esplanade Furniture, which donated a $750 grocery gift card.

Service Projects Committee chair Cindy Kelly said the outpouring of campus and community support is inspiring.

“We have such an amazing staff and faculty on campus—they pull together and really enjoy it,” she said. “It’s a great way to come together and do something positive.”

A reception to celebrate this year’s program and its anniversary will be held Wednesday, Dec. 9, for faculty, staff, students and social workers at the University Farm from 5 to 6 p.m. Gifts for the families will be distributed to the social workers Thursday.

For more information about Staff Council projects and activities, go to http://www.csuchico.edu/stac/index.shtml.