Holiday Helpers to provide gifts for low income families in Easton

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The kickoff party for Holiday Helpers will take place on Nov. 1 from 11 a.m. to 1 p.m. in the Farinon Atrium. (Photo courtesy of Annie Krege ’23)

Bernadette Russo, Assistant Arts and Culture Editor

When thinking about the holiday season, one of the first things that come to mind is gift-giving—but what about those that can’t afford holiday expenses? Through Holiday Helpers, the college is helping to make festive dreams come true. 

Holiday Helpers is a seasonal campaign within the Lafayette community to sponsor gifts for low-income families during the holiday season. The program’s goal this year is to fulfill 300 gift tags for both parents and children in the Easton community.

Annie Krege ’23, Holiday Helpers’ campaign director, has been working with her team, composed of Kevin Manogue ‘22, Alexis Fishman ‘22 and Quentin Humphrey ‘25, since September to make Holiday Helpers a reality this year. The team has reached out to many campus groups, including Greek organizations, SHEESH, athletic groups, alumni communications and faculty and staff, encouraging them to participate.

“The holiday season is a really good time for people to reflect on all of the privileges that they have in the Lafayette community,” Krege said. “And people might be a little bit more prone to acknowledge that privilege at a time when it’s in excess around the holiday.”

This year, the campaign has merged pre- and post-COVID-19 protocols, ensuring both an in-person component for Lafayette community members and a virtual component for alumni, families of Lafayette students and faculty and staff. Additionally, children will be receiving physical gifts and adults will get gift cards, a change from Holiday Helpers’ campaigns of years past. 

“We got a lot of feedback that the parents would rather have more things for their children,” Krege said. “So if they want to use those gift cards to get more things for their child they absolutely can, or they can use them to fulfill hygiene needs and all that stuff that might be useful for the holiday season.”

A kickoff party for the campaign will take place on Nov. 1 from 11 a.m. to 2 p.m. in the Farinon Atrium. The event, which features holiday festivities, will mark the first day people can pick up tags allowing them to sponsor a gift. Through the week following the kickoff, in-person tags will be available for pick-up in the atrium.

After the kickoff week, those who still want to contribute can donate through the group’s Amazon wish list, virtual tags, monetary donations, or a Google form until November 30. The gifts will be distributed to families in the Easton Area Neighborhood Center and St. Luke’s Nurse Family Partnership. Each tag contains a name and a list of gift ideas, with a spending budget of up to $25.

Krege said that Holiday Helpers is a way to further integrate Lafayette into the Easton area through supporting low-income families during the holiday season and giving back to the communities that provide opportunities for students.

Anyone within the Lafayette community can become involved in the month-long campaign. More information can be found on the Landis Center website.