Each year, the Portland field office and the FBI Citizens Academy Alumni Association “adopt” kids or families for the holidays. Our goal is to provide each person clothes (as needed) and a few wish list items. This year we are excited to partner with the Confederated Tribes of the Umatilla Indian Reservation to sponsor 31 children in its foster care system. Victim Specialist Erin Kevin works with the advocates at CTUIR on a regular basis.
Here’s a little bit more from the tribal folks on this work:
The Department of Children and Family Services of the Confederated Tribes of the Umatilla Indian reservation strives to support, guide and invest in our children and families of the community. We serve womb to tomb with the intent to empower current and future generations through culture and wellness. During the holiday seasons we aim to uplift our children who maybe in a circumstance of adversity and/or separation through the gift of giving.
How to Give
Given COVID concerns about shopping in stores, our physical contact with the gifts, and potential contact at delivery we are trying something new this year. All of our gift lists are built into “wish lists” on Amazon.com. If you are participating, we encourage you to buy your items through this format. I know that’s not ideal, but it does allow us to have contactless shopping and delivery in a safe way. The tribal folks will wrap the presents for the kids this year. Did I mention #2020 sucks, and we are just trying to make the best of it? If you want to give, here’s the process:
- Choose a child off the list (below) and let me know who you want. Each child will have 1 or 2 wish lists based on needs/wishes. I’ve tried to make each tag worth about $75 or less worth of items. You can take one tag, share a tag with others, or take multiple tags. If you want a better sense of what each child has on his/her list before taking one, call me, and I can walk you through who is still available and what they want.
- Once you have picked a child, I will share the Amazon wish list with you using your personal email address.
- Make sure you can afford some option for every item on the list. If not, let me know ASAP.
- You do your shopping. Each wish list has a mailing address associated with it so it should get delivered to CTUIR/DCFS with that child’s name on it. Caseworkers will sort the presents as they come in and wrap them for delivery before Christmas.
- You get bonus stars on Santa’s good list.
Q & A
- What if I don’t have an Amazon (or Amazon Prime) account?
Either partner with someone who does or contact me and we will find a work-around.
- What if I really want to buy gifts myself from elsewhere?
You can do that if you really really insist, but the items will still need to be shipped to CTUIR/DCFS. If you really need to do that, work with me to make sure it is coordinated with the caseworkers.
- How do the wish lists work?
We created the lists for each child with items based on the items requested by the families/caseworkers. Each list will have items such as “girls shirt, size 7/8” or “Legos”. Amazon conveniently provides you a link to a number of options for each item. NOTE: not all options are necessarily appropriate. Check sizes, age-appropriateness, etc. to ensure it is something you would buy for your child. Also, note that the Amazon elves are more than willing to sell you the most expensive option. Do your due diligence and shop accordingly.
- What if I take a list and decide I can’t afford everything on the wish list?
LET ME KNOW ASAP. We will re-assign the wish list to someone else or pair you up with someone else.
- What if I just don’t want to shop but want to help?
We need to purchase some gift cards that Amazon doesn’t sell. Let me know, and you can help with that effort.
- Do we have to do it this way next year?
That’s up to Santa.
- I like to provide a Christmas card from my family to my adopted kids. Can I still do that?
Yes, just get them to me by mid-December, and we will get those to the caseworkers to include with your gifts. (Remember: some of the gifts to the younger ones are from “Santa”… the older ones can be from “your name” or “FBI Family.”)
- Aiyana – age 12, Female – 2 lists
- Ava – age 9, Female – 2 lists
- Cody – age 13, Male – 1 lists
- Dalton – age 1, Male – 1 list
- Emilio – age 18, Male – 1 list
- Gia – age 4, Female – 1 list
- Hiyuum – age 11, Male – 2 lists
- Hunter – age 2, Male – 2 lists
- Jareen – age 14, Female – 1 list
- Joseph – age 8, Male – 2 lists
- Kane – age 5, Male – 2 lists
- Kendal – age 9, Male – 1 list
- Kinsley – age 4, Female – 1 list
- Latis – age 17, Female – 2 lists
- Lucious – age 15, Male – 1 list
- Markus – age 18, Male – 2 lists
- McKinley – age 5, Male – 1 list
- Nadine – age 8, Female – 2 lists
- Nettie – age 5, Female – 1 list
- Nikko – age 2.5, Male – 2 lists
- Phillip – age 15, Male – 2 lists
- Preston – age 17, Male – 1 list
- Rose – age 11 months, Female – 1 list
- Rylie – age 10, Female – 2 lists
- Sennia – age 16, Female – 1 list
- Serah – age, 18 months, Female – 1 list
- Stella – age, 14, Female – 1 list
- Tahiry – age 7, Female – 2 lists
- Tumayis – age 4, Male – 1 list
- Xavier – age 8, Male – 2 lists
- Zerah – age 4 months, Male – 1 list
- Nike – 1 of $25 – 50
- Walmart – 4 of at least $25 each
- Spotify – 1 of at least $25
- Phone card for minutes – 1 of at least $25
Any funds received will be utilized to fill in any gaps.
Thanks everyone for your generosity! It's a great time to put a bit of cheer back in this no-good-stupid-kind-of-year!