By: Denise Fleischer
Bringing a little happiness to children who might not have received gifts for Christmas is a wonderful gesture.
Helping Hand, a non-profit program in the village of Rosemont, organizes this seasonal giving for children at Rosemont Elementary School, Orchard Place and Algonquin Middle School both in Des Plaines.
“Everyone that’s on the school’s reduced or free lunch list receives a gift,” said Rick Drehobl, a retired Rosemont police officer who volunteers for the Helping Hand program. “Businesses then choose a grade and purchase gifts for them. They’ll give 400-450 gifts for kindergarten to eighth grade.”
Helping Hand volunteers picked up the donated gifts from local businesses on Dec. 14-18. Gifts included stuffed animals and wrapped presents.
The generosity of the following made this possible: the village’s Round Table, Rosemont Chamber of Commerce, Transnational, ITXM LifeSource, Christopher Burke Engineering, MB Financial, Wintrust, Fashion Outlets and Operation North Pole.
“There were extra stuffed animals from Operation North Pole so they gave them to the kids and the Rosemont Seniors gave Christmas stockings with candy,” added Drehobl.