The Community Assistance Program (CAP) is encouraging north Whatcom County residents experiencing financial constraints to sign up for its Thanksgiving basket kits and holiday toy store before the registration deadlines this month.
CAP, which serves Blaine, Birch Bay, Custer and Point Roberts residents, will once again hand out Thanksgiving baskets to families and individuals as well as host its Community Toy Store for parents to purchase holiday gifts at a discounted rate. The deadline for Thanksgiving basket registration is Friday, November 10 and the deadline to register for the Community Toy Store is Sunday, November 26. Registration is required for both programs.
The Thanksgiving basket program will allow local residents to pick up fixings for their Thanksgiving meals 12-2:30 p.m. Tuesday, November 21 behind Cost Cutter in Blaine.
The baskets will have a fresh turkey, potatoes, yams, stuffing mix, onions and celery, chicken broth, gravy mix, cranberry sauce, canned green beans, rolls, butter and milk, according to the CAP website.
Thanksgiving basket registration can be done online at blainecap.org. Those unable to register online may call 360/393-9483. After registering, participants will receive a postcard with information on picking up the baskets.
Over 250 residents received baskets last year, and CAP anticipates the need and food costs to be greater this year, according to a CAP press release on the baskets.
CAP pays for the baskets solely from financial contributions. Community members can donate online at blainecap.org or by mailing a check to CAP with “Thanksgiving Baskets” in the memo line. Checks need to be mailed to the CAP Center at 508 G Street, Blaine, WA, 98230.
Community Toy Store
CAP will set up its annual Community Toy Store December 7-9 at Valley Church, unit 260 in the Cost Cutter plaza. With help from community donations, new toys and gift cards will be discounted at 75 percent for parents to shop with cash for children and teens. Money from the toy sales will then be donated to The Bridge Community Hope Center’s emergency fund, Valley Church Essentials and Loads of Love.
The toy store is open for families living within Blaine school district boundaries who meet income guidelines for free or reduced lunch and are not receiving other gift assistance.
People need to register at blainecap.org, and if they are unable to register online, should call 530/828-5195.
People who need additional financial assistance can apply for a voucher but are encouraged to apply early and need to have finished their regular registration form.
Once applications are reviewed, families who are approved will receive a confirmation by phone or email and then receive a letter during the first week of December with their assigned shopping time. Childcare is not provided at the toy store.
CAP is looking for toy donations from community members before the donation deadline on Friday, December 1.
People can donate online through CAP’s Launching Success Learning Store and Amazon Wish List as well as by shopping in stores and then dropping off the gifts at designated locations. People who opt to shop in stores need to purchase new, unwrapped gifts ranging $20-$50, such as science kits, Legos, scooters, music toys and crafts. CAP also needs $25 gift cards for teens from stores such as Barnes & Noble, Best Buy, Michael’s, Hobby Lobby or TJ Maxx.
People can also give monetary donations by credit card on the CAP website and write checks to the Community Assistance Program. “Community Toy Store” needs to be in the memo and the check needs to be mailed to 508 G Street in Blaine. For more information on donations, visit blainecap.org.
Toys and gift cards can be dropped off at Blaine Public Library, Blaine Senior Center, The Bridge Community Hope Center, Birch Bay Village Recreation Center, Semiahmoo Golf Club, Semiahmoo Marina Café, the Inn at Semiahmoo and the Semiahmoo Athletic Club. The Pacific Building Center will only accept toys.
In addition to the Community Toy Store and Thanksgiving basket program, CAP also provides crisis, clothing, food and chaplain assistance.
This article was updated November 3 to clarify Valley Church Essentials will receive funds from the Community Toy Store.
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