The party ran from 1:00 – 5:00 pm on Sat Dec 4. As part of our safety measures, we divided the total number of 80 spots in 4 different time slots with 55 minutes per section. All participants wore masks. We created an easy online registration system by using Eventbrite with a QR code. We also promoted the through our special helpers and their friends. It is a sold out event with all spots taken.

When I started the planning of the party, I thought since it’s a party for the kids, it should be done by the kids because they know their peers the best. I recruited 11 children in the neighborhood to be on the committee. We met every Sunday for an hour in November to brainstorm ideas, make craft for the event and put all different pieces together. The special helpers (Elves and reindeers) came up with the “North Pole” theme, designed the party flyer, made the goodie bags, wrapped the gift boxes, drew the paintings and signs for decoration, made the music list , greeted guests and ran the craft stations. The event is a great project for the special helpers to learn and to serve their own community.

The party took place at the lobby of our strata, well decorated with the children’s artwork along with other Christmas ornaments. There were three craft stations: Christmas card making, gift bag decorating, and snowflake making. We had also invited Mr. and Mrs. Santa to the party, who kept the children giggling and smiling. Upon completion of our treasure hunt game grid, the children would get goodie bags from one of the special helpers. This is the most popular activity of all, as they couldn’t wait to get their goodie bags. All guests appreciate having this event, as it’s such a great way to meet neighbors and mingle. A few parents brought their babies who were born during Covid. They were especially grateful because this offers a rare opportunity for their children to leave their homes and meet people in a safe environment.

The event is a success. It has opened up a new conversation in our community about having more events like this in the future. Obviously, this would not happen without the support of the Neighborhood Small Grant Program. We are thankful that the programs gives us the financial means to have the party, which has served as a platform which allows us to reach out to the community, bring families together and encourage diversity.
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