Some Region volunteers brought some holiday cheer to some patients of Franciscan Health.
Volunteers gathered recently at ASC II, an auto repair shop in Dyer, operated by Jose and Kelly Martinez, to box and wrap 375 presents for Northwest Indiana families in need.
The gift-wrapping initiative has been a two-decade tradition for the Martinez family. It began with Rachael Martinez of Dyer deciding for her birthday that she wanted to have people provide gifts, which would be donated to families in need, according to Franciscan Health.
Kelly Martinez said the effort has grown each year and customers and community members donate much of what is given away.
“It’s really snowballed,” she said. “It’s just a great thing.”
This year, the Martinez family partnered with the Franciscan Health Foundation to distribute gifts to patients at Franciscan Health’s McAuley Health Clinic in Hammond and St. Clare Health Clinic in Crown Point, which serve the uninsured and underinsured in Northwest Indiana, many of whom face economic hardships.
Gifts are were given to clients in the VASIA (Volunteer Advocates for Seniors and Incapacitated Adults) program, who lack suitable family or guardian involvement to help them make decisions. The VASIA program recruits, trains and supervises community volunteers to serve as temporary limited guardians for these individuals.
Volunteers turned ordinary boxes into festive containers, filling them with toys, activities, clothing and personal care items.
“Everybody feels like it’s the start to their holiday season,” Rachael Martinez said.
Latest posts by Larry Avila (see all)
- Deadline Feb. 28 for Indiana Governor’s Fellowship program - February 21, 2020
- Several Region and North Central Indiana businesses named among Best Places to Work for in 2020 - February 21, 2020
- South Bend Regional Chamber event connects internship seekers, job hunters with employers - February 20, 2020