Christmas fund drive underway

If you can help, please do. You’ll be making a difference in your community and best of all, giving the gift of joy and love to Kauai’s young and old.

The Garden Island and the Zonta Club of Kauai are teaming up again and asking for donations to make the holidays happier for less-fortunate residents through The Garden Island/Zonta Christmas Fund.

Through Christmas Eve, The Garden Island will share stories of families facing challenges who could use a little holiday cheer. TGI uses fictitious names in the stories.

Donations will be distributed to needy families by Zonta Club members, who purchase gift certificates at appropriate businesses to help make their wishes come true.

Yoshiko “Dimples” Kano, chair of The Garden Island/Zonta Christmas Fund Committee, said each year the community responds to the program, with donations of thousands of dollars that brighten the holidays for hundreds of children and adults.

“It’s brought a lot of happiness to families in need,” Kano said.

The Garden Island/Zonta Christmas Fund was established in the early 1980s. Kano has been its chair for more than 20 years. It has, she said, been rewarding to see so many families benefit through the generosity of the community.

“It brings people together,” she said.

The Garden Island encourages individuals, clubs, schools and businesses to rally behind the Christmas Fund. Anyone making a donation of $500 or more can have their picture presenting the check published in TGI.

Only monetary donations can be accepted. Checks can be payable to Zonta Club of Kauai Foundation can be mailed to P.O. Box 3032, Lihue, HI., 96766.

Information: Yoshiko “Dimples” Kano, chair of The Garden Island/Zonta Christmas Fund Committee, 822-9882.

The following are stories of people who will receive help through The Garden Island/Zonta Christmas Fund. While the names have been changed, the situations described are real.

Many challenges

Mary Love received dialysis three times a week, is losing her eyesight and has arthritis. She is in constant pain and depressed. She lives alone and receives some support from her sister. Her monthly income can hardly pay for her clothing, food and medication. She lives in a very old house that is in need of constant repairs.

Struggling to get by

Michael lives alone and his daughter is his only support. His relationship with his daughter has been strained ever since his wife passed away, causing him to feel depressed and lonely. His limited income goes toward medication for his health issues.

Physical limitations

 Sam Aloha had a stroke several years ago and lives with his elderly siblings who also have physical limitations and health issues. They are not able to provide the care that he needs and he is quite dependent for himself. They are on a very tight budget and most of their earnings are used for healthcare, food and medications.

Senior needs help

 Jane Moon is elderly, frail and home bound due to back problems. Her family is not supportive of her needs and she relies on friends and neighbors to help with her daily needs. Her monthly income can only pay for her rent and she receives food from the food bank and clothes from friends.

Alone,  little money

 Billy lives in a care home. His only family lives on the Big Island and they rarely come to visit him. All of his monthly income goes toward paying for the care home, which leaves him with hardly anything for himself.

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