Making Spirits Bright: Community support brings holiday magic to CCS
Written by: Tanisha Barker, Awareness & Prevention Staff CCS with contributions from Chelsea Smith, Child & Youth Victim Advocate CCS
The Holiday season is a time for gratitude, giving, and joy—a time for us to connect with our families and loved ones, and a time for us to share a little magic with those in need. For families, adults and children impacted by domestic violence and sexual assault, however, that magic and joy can be difficult to find, turning the Holidays into a stressful and overwhelming time instead.
Last year, Canyon Creek Services served 770 clients—men, women, and children in our community who have experienced trauma and violence that no one deserves to go through. We provide housing, financial assistance, emotional support and so much more for these individuals.
The Holiday season allows us to provide even more, and, as our Child & Youth Advocate Chelsea puts it, “bring a little bit of light to those who are just trying to survive.”
This is the second year Chelsea has had the opportunity to work at Canyon Creek Services during the Holidays. Her unique perspective as an advocate for children and teens shows how our community has rallied together to bring Holiday cheer to those most in need. Because providing gifts for children and families during the Holidays goes beyond the necessary services funded by our grants, we rely on our wonderful community to help make up the difference. “We would not be able to do what we do without the support of the community,” says Chelsea, “Donations help in many different ways, from bringing excitement to kids to helping lighten the load that guardians carry.”
Be it food, clothing or toys, each donation represents one less thing survivors in our community have to worry about during this time of year. Chelsea’s favorite part of being an advocate during the Holiday season is “seeing the excitement in our clients’ eyes and the relief knowing they have support through the Holiday season.” The joy she sees in the children she helps is especially amazing. “The excitement and love that radiates from these kids is magic when they get to pick something [from our community donations] to give to a family member.”
This Holiday season, we want to express our gratitude for the overwhelming support we have already received from our community. Our advocates work tirelessly to support survivors in any way they can and see a lot of hurt and trauma. By providing the magic and light of the Holidays to survivors, our community is also providing magic and light to our incredible staff.
Donors may not see how much of an impact their support has, but our advocates do. They make a difference far greater than they can imagine.
“I think the community may be surprised by the amount of hope and comfort their support provides to the staff of Canyon Creek Services,” Chelsea says, “It is a relief to know that our survivors are going to have a magical holiday season and that our community supports us in facilitating that.”
Thank you from the bottom of our hearts for bringing us another wonderful Holiday filled with gratitude, giving, and joy. For more information on how you can support us this holiday season, visit canyoncreekservices.org/holiday or contact ReAnne at 801-814-4985. If you are interested in volunteering at CCS, contact Linda at email@example.com.