Asking for help in the spirit of the holidays

December 18, 2012

There's only so far that a single mom can get on her own before she might need to ask for help. Balancing work, school, home and kids would be difficult for any person, and even more so when handling all of these facets alone. In light of the holidays, many single moms are encouraged to look beyond college scholarships for other kinds of assistance that may help with making the season more merry.

Spirit of giving
One of the major areas of assistance is with food, and not just from pantries and free banks. Some groups are adopting entire families for the holidays, the Post Crescent reported, providing them with festive meals and all the trimmings, as well as home decor and other essentials that most charities won't provide. The Adopt-A-Family program is sponsored by the Salvation Army and requires that potential donors provide a specific dollar value for the size of the family they want to sponsor. Donations are sometimes given to single moms in the form of food, but others will allow monetary gifts as well.

The Huffington Post wrote that these kinds of giveaways start around Thanksgiving, so appealing to local charities in November is a good way to start. The source wrote that one mom got an entire Thanksgiving dinner and money for the holidays after speaking to a grocery store manager. Similar cases have seen the same results, though this is largely based on individual business policies. Going to established charities is usually the best course of action, and starting early is also advised, since demand is usually very high.

Under the tree
Presents are another sticking point of the holidays, and with young kids, buying toys and games may be a little easier. Crayons and coloring books can be procured at very low cost, but these aren't enough for somewhat older children, and even those under 10 may tire of the same presents every year. Toys for Tots is a well-known program run by the U.S. Marine Corps that distributes toys throughout the country to families in need. Single moms can capitalize on this opportunity by getting in touch with a local chapter by phone. Their website provides state-by-state specific instructions on who to contact and where to appear, but other areas invite moms to talk to local social workers and pastors to find other assistance in procuring presents.

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