The Candy Cane Corner holiday store is running its 19th season right now in Salt Lake City at 1821 South Empire Road. It provides Christmas gifts to low income families and individuals participating in programs at the Road Home, YWCA and Volunteers of America Utah. Last year, the Candy Cane Corner provided Christmas to 548 families which included 1,312 children.
How you can help:DONATE--For the first year in a long time, the Candy Cane Corner has had to start from scratch, not able to roll over inventory from previous years. They are in desperate need of new gifts, toys, clothing, and housewares. You can drop off donations at their store location on 1821 South Empire Street Suite G. Their hours are Monday-Friday 12:00p.m. to 7:00 p.m. and Saturday and Sunday 12:00 p.m. to 5:00 p.m.
VOLUNTEER–The Candy Cane Corner is almost entirely staffed by volunteers who re-stock the shelves, wrap the gifts and assist shoppers with their gift lists. Directors request that volunteers be 16 years or older, but will consider younger volunteers with adequate adult supervision. For more information and to find the volunteer sign up list, click here.
MY EXPERIENCE–This is a great holiday service opportunity to share with your teens. There is a fun element to organizing clothing and gifts, kind of like you are “playing store.” Though the Candy Cane Corner is in a cold, empty warehouse, directors hope to create as excellent a shopping atmosphere as possible and ask for careful work from volunteers. There is also the direct connection that these gifts are for people who have no other means for Christmas. It’s a sobering experience that can help diffuse the “I deserve an i-phone” mentality. Right now there are hardly any toys and shelves waiting for girls and especially teen clothing. Contributing to this cause, you are reaching out to three great service organizations–The Road Home, YWCA and Volunteers of America. It is a reminder that we don’t have to look outside our own community to find people to help.
Happy Giving Tuesday!