Holiday helpers needed in the community


Holiday Helpers Web 1

There may be no better way to get into the holiday spirit than to make the season brighter for those in need. If you’re looking for ways to serve as a family, with friends and/or as an office, here are ideas from agencies that partner with the Office of Public Affairs. If your work team takes part in a holiday service adventure, email photos to for possible use in future editions of the newsletter.

Click on the agencies below to get to the organization's website.

Center for the Homeless

Adopt a guest or family

Nov. 1 to Dec. 16
Spending range: $100 per child/$50 per adult
Store gift cards for adults are best.
Email with questions.

Hannah's House

Help with Holiday Happenings

Donate auction items by Nov. 29 for the Dec. 14 Holiday Happenings event. Drop off items to the business office, 410 S. Spring St. Mishawaka, or email Kate Fischer, community engagement coordinator at Hannah’s House, to make other arrangements. To sign up to help at the event, email The deadline to register to attend Holiday Happenings is Dec. 12.

Collect donations at Winding Brook light display

Dec. 24-25, evenings.
Collect donations for Hannah’s House from drivers as they exit the Mishawaka subdivision's holiday light display.
Click to sign up for one-hour shifts.

Gather bus passes and gift cards for guests

Purchase Transpo bus passes, 30-day or two-week, and/or $5-$25 gift cards to Meijer, Martin’s, other grocery stores, Speedway or 7-Eleven for guests of Hannah’s House to earn in the agency's incentive program. Gift cards and bus passes may be mailed to Hannah’s House c/o P.O. Box 1413, Mishawaka, IN 46544, or dropped off at the business office, 410 S. Spring St., Mishawaka. If your family or office collects a large number of bus passes and gift cards, email email Kate Fischer to arrange for her to pick them up.

Hope Ministries

Sponsor a meal

Any time of year.
Collect $250 to provide 100+ guests with a meal.

Serve lunch

Any time of year.
You can sponsor the meal (see above) and serve it. 

Tutor a student

During the academic year.
Grades K-6, 4-5 p.m., Mon.-Thurs.
Junior high school and high school, 5-6 p.m., Mon.-Thurs.

REAL Services

Participate in Elves for Elders

"Adopt" a senior by Nov. 27.
Purchase $50 worth of gifts and deliver them to REAL Services by Dec. 6, or deliver them to homes by Dec. 20.
There are REAL Services clients in Elkhart, Kosciusko, LaPorte, Marshall and St. Joseph counties.

Help in other ways

Donate gift cards for seniors.
The most requested cards are for Meijer, Walmart, Kroger and Martin’s.
Financial donations are also accepted so REAL Services staff can purchase gifts to seniors on your behalf. 

St. Margaret’s House 

Adopt a Guest and/or Family

Nov. 22 to Dec. 6

Christmas Shop

Dec. 2-23
Help guests “shop” for gifts for their families.
Two-hour shifts, M-F, 10 a.m.-noon and 1-3 pm.

Salvation Army Kroc Center

Be a Red Kettle bell ringer

Nov. 9-Dec. 24
Multiple shifts and locations:

Collect and distribute "Adopt a Family" gifts

Dec. 6-7
Multiple families are "adopted" during the holiday season.
Lend a hand when gifts are dropped off on Dec. 6.
Distribute gifts to the families on Dec. 7.

Call 574-367-2346, email or sign up at

Work at "Angel Tree" booth

Nov. 9-Dec. 13
Work at the Angel Tree at University Park Mall in Mishawaka and help people choose an angel (a child) for whom to buy gifts.
Multiple shifts available. 
Pick your shift at

Sort "Angel Tree" gifts

Nov. 18-Dec. 13
Help sort gifts at the warehouse and prepare them for Distribution Day, Dec. 17.
Multiple shifts available. 
To volunteer, call 574-367-2346, email or sign up at

Move “Angel Tree” gifts

Dec. 13-14
Move gifts from the warehouse to the Kroc Center for Distribution Day, Dec. 17.
Multiple shifts available.

To volunteer, call 574-367-2346, email or sign up at

Distribute gifts 

Dec. 17
Shifts are 7 a.m. to noon or noon to 5 p.m.
Help distribute toys, clothing, food and more to people who signed up for Christmas assistance.
o volunteer, call 574-367-2346, email or sign up at