2016 Christmas Parties
In December more than 450 guests, volunteers and staff celebrated Christmas at three parties in Northern Virginia, Southeast DC, and Northwest DC. With singing, bingo, face-painting, balloons and of course Santa and his merry band of elves, the Samaritan Ministry Christmas parties were festive occasions to be community together across geographical boundaries as well as income levels and race.
Each party had its own special atmosphere, be it the hot dogs and half-smokes in Southeast, the gift-wrapping room in Northern Virginia, or the painting and drawing tables in Northwest. Traditional partnerships continued as seventy adults and children with Housing Up (formerly Transitional Housing Corporation) joined in the celebrations in Southeast and Northwest DC. Thank you for making this possible!
We especially want to thank our hosts and sponsors: Christ Lutheran Church, St. Alban's (Annandale), St. Francis (Great Falls), St. Philip's (DC), St. Philips Child Development Center and St. Timothy's; as well as all the congregations and partner parishes who made this possible, including Grace Church (Silver Spring) and their youth groups, St. Andrew's (College Park), St. Andrew's Episcopal School (Potomac), St. Columba's (DC), St. George's (Arlington), St. John's (Norwood), St. Luke's (DC), St. Patrick's (DC), St. Paul's (Rock Creek), and St. Peter's (Arlington).
Gracious thanks to four of our volunteers for their outstanding contributions: Ginger Roll (St. Francis), for her many years of organizing the NW party; Paul Brady (Grace Church) for being Santa's personal elf and delivering toys and gifts; Rebecca Lent (Grace Church) for volunteering to run the NoVa party; and Theresa Lewallen, for leading the St. Alban's (Annandale) in their first time hosting at NoVa.
Finally, we wish to recognize the contributions of Abraham Butler, Brisa and Jasmin Martine, Ed Sobansky, Fiona and Nancy Letsinger, Housing UP, Mrs. Clause, Trinity Volunteer Corp, and our toy donors.
The abundance of gifts (more than a thousand in all!) allowed Samaritan Ministry to not only provide participants with gifts for their children, but to share our abundance with the Bishop Walker School for Boys (sporting equipment), Mary's Center (toys) and Hoffman-Boston Elementary School in Arlington (educational books and art supplies).
Samaritan Ministry is hosting three Christmas parties for Next Step participants and their families - at least 400 persons will be reached among the three parties! We invite to to enjoy some of the photos from our Southeast party.