By Bonnie Adams, Managing Editor
Westborough – Westborough Youth and Family Services (WYFS) and the Rotary Club of Westborough are once again teaming up to sponsor a free Holiday Gift Shop for families in need.
WYFS first started the project in 2001 and partnered with the Rotary Club in 2004. All of the gifts are donated courtesy of generous residents, businesses, and organizations. The Rotary then provides assistance with advertising, arranging for gifts to be picked up and then storing any gifts that are not distributed.
Westborough Girl Scout troops 30555 and 30635 also volunteer their time and talents to decorate the shop, creating a festive atmosphere for the patrons.
Last year the shop served 69 families, providing gifts for 158 children, according to Cathy Cairns, WYFS administrative assistant.
“There are still a lot of people suffering,” she said. “But there is also so much generosity.”
Those who are interested in donating gifts for the shop may do so in several ways. New, unwrapped items may be dropped off in the collection box just outside the WYFS office, room 21 in the Forbes Municipal Building (FMB); at the Westborough Fire Department, 42 Milk St.; or the Westborough Library, 55 West Main St.
Suggested gifts for younger children include building sets, dolls, trucks, craft and science kits, or books. Suggested items for teens include makeup, jewelry, sweatshirts, iPods, DVDs, and gift cards to stores such as Target or Walmart.
Donations of gift wrap and new and “gently-used” winter coats are being accepted, as well.
Monetary donations are also welcome. Checks should be made out to the Rotary Club of Westborough, with the notation “Free Holiday Store,” and mailed to: Rotary Club of Westborough, P.O. Box 903, Westborough, MA 01581.
To set up an appointment at the store, residents may call WYFS for an application at 508-366-3090; email the office at [email protected] or pick up an application outside its office at the FMB, room 21. Applications may also be downloaded from the town's website, www.town.westborough.ma.us/holidaystore.
Proof of residency, such as a driver's license, utility bill, or tax bill, is required.