Early in my career as an educator a kindergarten student confided that she knew she was “different from others” on her first day of school. She explained that classmates had brand new crayons and she had a baggie full of broken ones that her mom had tucked into her backpack. I have never forgotten this little girl.
We moved to Kansas and discovered JCCB five years ago. The Holiday SHOP was unlike anything we had ever witnessed before. My husband and I discovered we could become part of a much larger effort, working side by side with others to provide for thousands of our neighbors. Experiencing the gratefulness of our clients inspires us to share our time, talents, financial resources and our hearts!
I grew up in Johnson County and in my early 20's found myself in dire straits: a single mom, working multiple jobs and wondering how I would pay the bills let alone put food on the table. My past circumstances fuel my compassion and desire today to help those who need warmth and support at the holidays. My hope is that this small token of a coat, hat, gloves, scarf, clothing, a little extra food, personal care items, a book and a gift on our part gives our clients a blessing, shows them that someone sees them and cares and gives them a small reprieve so they can focus on their future.
I was introduced to JCCB when the original “Gala” was created. It involved an auction program I had developed. I found JCCB to be a great community-based cause. It was a smaller nonprofit where volunteers were needed for their time and talents.
I am truly fortunate that volunteering with JCCB allows me to share all the areas of my education, training, and work experiences that I enjoy, while giving back and helping my community. This is a true win-win for all.
I am very drawn to the fact that the Johnson County Christmas Bureau is about neighbors helping neighbors and bringing awareness to the poverty that exists in our community. I love that this organization is volunteer driven and that people work year round to provide a wonderful holiday season to those in need of assistance.
I have volunteered at the Holiday Shop and Festival of Trees and have seen first hand the dedication and enthusiasm that the other volunteers and the Board members of the Johnson County Christmas Bureau have for the citizens of Johnson County. I want to be a part of this organization to help serve the people of Johnson County who are experiencing difficulty and need a helping hand during the Christmas season.
Many hours of “behind the scenes” work go into the preparation and execution of all the areas involved in this organization. Volunteers work all year round to provide an opportunity to bless families in Johnson County with needs at Christmas time.
Our mission is simple and clear. It is about lessening the burdens of our neighbors, providing support when it is most
needed, and helping us all learn
how to help each other.
As a child I was fortunate to have had all that I needed. Though working and paying bills was not easy for my parents and there were not many extras, we had what we needed. Then and now, we all have neighbors who are living below the poverty level. I am proud to be part of an organization that garners the support of our community to care for our neighbors.
As a mom I will always remember a particular winter day when my 2nd grade son got out of the car to go into the school building. He was quickly checking his coat pockets for something and pulled out an extra pair of mittens in the process. He found what he was looking for, repacked his pockets, said bye mom, and went into the building. Later that day, I asked Justin why he was carrying an extra pair of mittens in his pockets. He said: “Oh, those are for Matthew.” Justin carried an extra pair of mittens for his friend Matthew, to use during recess; when recess was over, Justin put the mittens back in his pockets so Matthew would have them to wear the following day.
As a child, I loved Christmas. It was a magical time with traditional gifts, meals, and treats. As a mother, I want every child in our community to experience the joy of the holidays. For the past 60 years, JCCB has provided a way for Johnson Countians to support our neighbors experiencing financial hardship during the winter holiday season. Starting as a grassroots organization, JCCB is more than a nonprofit agency. It is a group of friends and neighbors who care. With a minimal budget, and a lot of love, JCCB makes a big difference in our community!
I was first introduced to the JCCB when I helped deliver groceries the PTA collected at my son’s school. Impressed by the organization’s mission and seeing the Shop for the first time, I was inspired to attend a meeting to find out more. Now I have been at the Christmas Bureau for over 25 years in various positions, including President numerous times. The Christmas Bureau’s mission remains the same, to provide food and gifts to help Johnson County families during the holidays. I am still impressed by the hard working volunteers who make this happen every year.
Christmastime is my favorite time of year, but I know for many people it can be a reminder of loneliness and struggle. I love that JCCB helps provide assistance to our low-income neighbors and helps to elevate community awareness of poverty in Johnson County. Being able to help others through JCCB is very rewarding. I particularly like that we are able to assist our low-income seniors confined to nursing homes and children who might not otherwise have a Christmas. Neighbors helping neighbors is what it’s all about.
I was introduced to JCCB when a friend and fellow Rotarian served on the Board. What started as volunteering with other Lenexa Rotary members for one afternoon during the Holiday Shop more than 10 years ago, quickly evolved into a love for the organization’s mission and more volunteer involvement. I love the simplicity of JCCB’s outreach and the meaningful and direct impact I see provided to our neighbors who just need a helping hand. As I am nearing retirement, I hope to become even more active in this fine organization and am proud to serve on the Board of Directors.