(credit: Thinkstock)

(credit: Thinkstock)

Each year when the holidays come around, people tend to think of those less fortunate and how they can help. With so many organizations that collect holiday donations both at the national and local level, it’s hard to know how to choose. These organizations have particularly robust holiday giving campaigns, some of the best in Seattle, perfect for you and yours this holiday season.
316 Broadway
Seattle WA 98122-5325
(206) 624-6477

Signing up to sponsor a family is easy with Child Haven as it allows donors to sign up via its website as the holidays approach. Donors may select the number and size of families they would like to sponsor and designate a geographic area should they like to support their direct community. Family wish lists are sent out in mid-November via email for donors to make their purchases from. Lists will include the names and ages of the gift recipients and typically include household items, toys and clothing.

Willows Creek Corporate Center

10675 Willows Road NE, Suite 275
Redmond, WA 98052
(425) 869-6000

Hopelink has been giving vital services such as food, housing, education and transportation to those in need from its five Seattle area locations since 1971. During the holiday season, when the need is so high, it offers a number of programs to help donors tailor their giving. With the Hopelink Gift Rooms, parents in need may shop for their children, picking out gifts personally as they would in a store. Donations may be made directly to the gift rooms by contacting Hopelink.

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First Place
P.O. Box 22536
Seattle, WA 98122-0536
(206) 323-6715

First Place serves families in need by providing education, housing and support services. It is known nationally for innovative programs, particularly in the area of education that help break the poverty cycle. During the holiday season, it offers two ways to support clients both in the Adopt-a-Family and Adopt-a-Classroom programs. Donors who sign up for the Adopt-a-Family program will be given a wish list from a family that allows gifts to be exactly what the clients need and want. Typical wish lists contain toys, clothing and gift cards. The Adopt-a-Classroom program is unique and helps donors give school supplies to the classrooms that are such an integral part of First Place’s services. These classroom gifts often provide assistance to the educational programs well beyond the holiday season.

YMCA Young Adult Services
2100 24th Ave. S. Suite 250
Seattle, WA 98144
(206) 749-7550

YMCA Young Adult Services offers transitional housing to 50 people (ages 18 to 24) throughout the year. Most of the clients have recently left the foster care system due to age and are transitioning into the next phase of their life with little to no family support. During the holiday season, the YMCA aims to help the clients feel at home as part of their living group. It needs holiday sponsorships for the living groups, which entails a small gift for each of the five members, typically from a wish list. Contact the YMCA program director for lists as well as gift drop off information.

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Pike Market Child Care and Preschool
1501 Pike Place #222
Seattle, WA 98101
(206) 625-0842

Pike Market Child Care and Preschool offers services to low-income families that those families might otherwise not be unable to obtain. Many of these families struggle at the holidays to make ends meet and provide gifts for their children. Donors may let Pike Market know their budget, and the charity will select the number and size of families that fit. Following the purchase, donations may be dropped off at the Pike Market location, and donors may expect thank you cards from the family.

Megan Knight resides in the Capitol Hill neighborhood of Seattle, WA. During the day she works in IT Management and at night is a royal news junkie. Her work can be found at Examiner.com.