Carole’s story

Volunteering for Christmas at Moorelands… it’s worth it!

by Carole Legget (aka Christmas Carole)

In 1996 I volunteered for Christmas Sharing at the Downtown Churchworkers Association, as Moorelands was then called. Jan Kerst, the Coordinator and I, self-proclaimed ‘Queen of the Basement’, worked in happy, sometimes madcap harmony in the old Carlaw Avenue warren basement where “Turn right at the dead mouse” helped find the storeroom one day. Christmas Sharing was labour intensive in the mid ’90s since only some of our families were adopted. We packed gift and food boxes for some two hundred families with the help of many volunteers. Once in a while we found ourselves with a surprise delivery and no volunteers.

One such snowy, stormy December morning an 18-wheeler arrived early with all the food to be packed, only the volunteers were coming in the afternoon. With ‘All hands to the pumps’ spirit our four hands took on the daunting task. In very similar light blue jackets, white hair flying, we unloaded what felt like tons of cases of jars, tins and boxes of food onto a huge commercial dolly that we could barely control. (So much for workplace safety.) Passing truck drivers slowed, stared, waved and honked at the unlikely duo questioning why two ladies-of-a-certain-age were unloading a truck. Had the company fallen on hard times? Had we? We said ‘They must be wondering what on earth those two old broads are doing’ and laughed so much we could hardly continue unloading.

Trucks no longer roll up with tons of food. Families now select their own food with grocery gift cards provided by adopters. Each Christmas when I think of the ‘old days’ of lifting, hauling and packing, I wonder how we did it but never why. I remember the mom who danced, sang and hugged us; the dad who said not a word, but called the next day to say he was so overcome, speechless and the mom who burst into tears when she saw that all three children had skates. There were the parents who set off with impossibly laden buggies and backpacks in rush hour; the mom who made five TTC trips across the city carrying bags and the mom so thrilled with the pictures to hang on her bare walls and…….It was worth it. It still is.

Christmas Carole

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An Update from Lynda on COVID-19

Due to the ongoing COVID-19 situation and public health advice to stay at home, Moorelands Kids’ office staff are working remotely and our office will be virtual until June 8th. Staff members are available by email or phone. Please visit our contact page to get in touch via email or our staff directory for a list of phone numbers.

On Tuesday, May 19th, the Government of Ontario announced that overnight camps must remain closed throughout the summer. While we are so sad that Moorelands Camp will not be able to run as usual this year, this news was not unexpected and we understand this decision: the safety of our campers and staff is always our first priority. We are refunding all camp deposits/fees already paid. Details have been emailed to registered camper families.

But we do have some good news! In anticipation of this announcement, we had already made extensive plans for a fun virtual camp experience and we’ll be Sending Camp to Kids this summer! More details coming soon including how to apply starting May 25th!

We commit to maintaining our beautiful camp property. We will continue to do everything we need to do to make sure that we can be at camp next year and for many more years to come! That’s why we need your support now more than ever. If you would like to make a donation, please click here or call: 416-466-9987 ext. 309.

New Virtual Programs Launch!

We're excited to launch virtual leadership programs while TDSB schools are closed. Check them out here: Virtual Programs. We'll be making announcements soon about our new Virtual Camp for summer 2020. Stay tuned!

If you need information on COVID-19 or health advice, please visit Toronto Public Health’s website. Moorelands Kids will continue to post updates about our services as the situation evolves.

Stay safe and healthy,

Lynda Tilley, Executive Director | Moorelands Kids