Help Make Christmas Merrier for a Child
Date: Dec 03, 2009
Special "Sharing Trees" will be available beginning Nov. 25 at four Wilsonville locations - Albertsons, Les Schwab Tire Center, Key Bank and West Coast Bank. Each tree has several paper stockings with the wishes of young girls and boys. The public is being asked to select a stocking, then return it to the store with an unwrapped gift no later than Dec. 15. In time for Christmas, Santa Claus will present the gifts to the children during a special mother-child event inside the prison walls.
"Sadly, almost two million children in this country have a parent in prison," TACE cofounder and chairman John Ludlow said. "As a result of parental incarceration and the crimes and arrests that precede it, thousands of children endure traumatic separations from their parents and erratic shifts from one caregiver to another."
The TACE program is a partnership between Oregon Department of Corrections and the Rotary Club of Wilsonville. It is designed to help rebuild families, encourage better parenting skills by incarcerated inmates, and thereby help break the intergenerational cycle of crime.
"These children are less likely than their peers to succeed in school and more likely to be involved in substance abuse, gangs and delinquency," Ludlow said. "They are six times more likely than other children to become inmates themselves, perpetuating the inter-generational cycle of criminality that is so prevalent in our prisons. The children are victims in their own rights."
The program was founded in 2001 when the Rotary Club of Wilsonville became involved with Coffee Creek Correctional Facility. The relationship started with Christmas gifts for the children of the inmates. A summer in-wall program was soon added.
"Over the years the community of Wilsonville has shown phenomenal support for the programs at Coffee Creek Correctional Facility," Ludlow said. "Any gifts, including cash donations, would be greatly appreciated by the Rotary Club of Wilsonville, Coffee Creek staff, inmates and their children."
The locations for the Sharing Christmas trees this year will be:
Albertsons - 30299 S.W. Boones Ferry Road.
Les Schwab Tire Center, 29175 S.W. Town Center Loop West.
Key Bank, 9490 S.W. Wilsonville Road.
West Coast Bank, 29702 S.W. Town Center Loop West.
Instructions: On each stocking tag you will read, "Your gift will go to a child of an incarcerated parent who visits their mother at Coffee Creek Correctional Facility on December 20 or 21, 2009. Please bring you gift in a gift bag or UNWRAPPED (with tag attached) back to this business no later than Monday Dec. 14, 2009. Please do not purchase and submit toy weapons, stuffed animals, clothes or items made of glass. Also, try to limit the value of the gift to $ 35.00. Your generosity is greatly appreciated!"