Domestic Violence Prevention, Inc. is gearing up for its 2019 Santa Store Christmas program which provides its clients the opportunity to Christmas shop for their children.
With the help of the community, DVP will fill the ‘store’ with age-appropriate toys and the parent will be able to come in and choose gifts for their child at no cost. DVP’s goal is to make sure these children have a Christmas to remember for all the right reasons.
“This program brings joy to both the parent and child and serves as a needed bright spot for these families who have been through so much. The impact this program has is potentially life-long and can build self-esteem for the parent, strengthen family bonds and help end the cycle of family violence,” said James Roberts, DVP director of operations.
Last year 149 children were served through the program.
“We anticipate the need will be even greater this year. We expect to provide Christmas for 175 kids. DVP has served 996 victims of abuse in the past year and 300 of those were children so we have set a goal of raising $17,500 and we need the community’s support for this special project,” Roberts said.
The community can donate new toys or make a financial donation and DVP will do the shopping. One-hundred percent of the money donated goes toward this project.
“These families are known to our agency and are not receiving help from other agencies in town. Many of DVP’s clients do not have the necessary documents to receive assistance from other programs that provide Christmas gifts for children or they are too afraid to ask for help in such a public way,” said Pam Dennington, DVP executive director.
The opportunity to shop in the Santa Store will be available to families who’ve stayed at the DVP shelter or whose mothers have received outreach services in the past year. The Santa Store will be in a secure location.
Financial donations or donations of new toys can be dropped off at DVP’s office from 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. Monday through Thursday and 8 a.m. to 4 p.m. Friday at 424 Spruce St., Texarkana, Texas 75501 or mailed to the same address. All donations should be in by Dec. 17.
DVP’s service area includes Bowie and Cass counties in Texas and Miller, Little River, Hempstead, Sevier, Howard, Pike, Nevada and Lafayette counties in Arkansas. The organization provides an emergency shelter to help people escape critical situations of family violence, a 24-hour emergency hotline, outreach services including helping victims secure protective orders, support groups, counseling and case management to help victims of domestic violence gain their independence.
Call DVP at 903-794-4000 for more information. Anyone who needs help escaping a violent situation can call the 24-hour crisis line at 903-793-HELP (4357).