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OR&R Seattle Teams up with Downtown Emergency Services Center to Provide Holiday Gift Bags for Homeless

DECEMBER 23, 2019 — Many of us are fortunate to have friends and family to spend the holiday season with; however, we know that many in our community face a different reality. 

Three people posing with boxes of gift bags.
OR&R's Nickie Scillo delivering donated bags to the Downtown Emergency Services Center in Seattle. Image credit: NOAA.

For this reason, OR&R staff at NOAA's Western Regional Center in Seattle teamed up with the Downtown Emergency Services Center (DESC), one of the largest homelessness and housing organizations in the city, to provide holiday gift bags for homeless and at-risk individuals that the organization serves. DESC's clients include about 2,500 men and women, many of whom are separated from family, living with significant mental illnesses and physical disabilities, and merely surviving day to day, living on the streets.

To make this contribution, many OR&R staff members sponsored a gift bag and its contents by giving cash, then several staff members shopped for the gift items (e.g., beanies, warm gloves, warm socks, a bit of candy, Cup of Noodles, food gift cards, etc.). The staff then gathered during their annual holiday party to assemble 40 gift bags for DESC recipients. We hope that, over the holidays, they can warm their hands and hearts with the new gloves and something hot and nourishing from a nearby restaurant, and enjoy the small gift that may be the only one received all year.

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Assembled gift bags.
Gift bags for homeless, assembled and ready for delivery. Image credit: NOAA.
Last updated Sunday, January 12, 2020 10:20am PST