The Christmas Store
The Christmas Store exists to provide new toys at Christmas to children in low-income families by engaging volunteers in meaningful community service.
Following the instructions of Jesus, the Christmas Store is designed to help families in this area who are in need during the holidays. There are many families who do not have adequate resources to purchase gifts for their children at Christmas time. They find themselves struggling just to “make ends meet” with the necessities of life. Additionally, there are many other people in this area who have abundant resources. They find themselves wanting to help their neighbors, but do not know what the need is or how to help. The purpose of the Christmas Store is to bring those two groups together.
Frequently Asked Questions
- When will the Christmas Store take place?
- Where does the Christmas Store take place?
- Who benefits from the store?
- What will the Christmas Store look like?
- How is the Christmas Store stocked?
- How many people will this year’s store serve?
- How can I help?
- How can I donate toys to the Christmas Store?
- How can I coordinate my organization’s partnership with the Christmas Store?
- How can I volunteer to help on the days of the Christmas Store?
When will the Christmas Store take place?
The 2017 Christmas Store will take place on Friday & Saturday, December 8-9.
Previous store hours have been 12:00pm-8:00pm on Friday and 9:00am-5:00pm on Saturday.
Where does the Christmas Store take place?
The Christmas Store is hosted by New Horizons Fellowship at 820 East Williams Street (Hwy 55) in Apex, NC.
Who benefits from the store?
Families are referred to the Christmas Store by Western Wake Crisis Ministry, Dorcas Ministries, Southern Wake Faith Community in Action, the Fuquay-Varina Emergency Food Pantry and the Holly Springs Food Cupboard. Throughout the year, these organizations work with people who are in crisis situations resulting from a lack of resources. They will refer clients with children 14 years of age or younger to come to the Christmas Store. School counselors from local schools will also refer families whom they know to be in need during the holiday season. The 2016 Christmas Store served 1245 children from 490 families.
What will the store look like?
The Christmas Store is hosted by New Horizons Fellowship in Apex, NC. Each client receives an appointment time upon registration, and has an opportunity to “shop” at the store on that day and time. When they arrive, they will be greeted by volunteers and treated to holiday music, decorations and refreshments. Free child care is provided for clients who bring their children. The children will visit with Santa’s helpers, hear the Christmas story, and enjoy crafts, snacks or games. Sometimes Santa makes a surprise visit.
Meanwhile, the parents are given an opportunity to select 2-3 gifts for each child registered. The store is divided up into age groups, making it easier to make toy selections. Volunteers are available to assist clients in finding that special item. When clients have finished shopping, the gifts will be wrapped. Volunteers then assist the clients in getting the wrapped items to their car and picking up their children from care.
How is the Christmas Store stocked?
Toys come from various individuals, churches, companies and civic and community organizations. Donated toys should be brand new and in the box (no used toys will be accepted). The suggested price range for donated toys is $10-15.
How many people will this year’s store serve?
Each year’s store differs in the number of children registered, but a typical number of registrations would serve approximately 1,200 children. At three toys per child, that means the store would need to stock at least 3,600 toys. The best deadline for the donation of toys is the Sunday prior to the Christmas Store. Client registration takes place each year in October and November at New Horizons Fellowship in Apex.
How can I help?
Opportunities exist in every part of the Christmas Store. Here are just a few specific ways in which you can help:
- purchasing toys for the Christmas Store to share with families in need
- making a donation to the Christmas Store
- serving as your local church, company, or civic organization’s coordinator
- volunteering to work in the store
How can I donate toys to the Christmas Store?
You may pick up a tree tag from the tree in the lobby at New Horizons Fellowship in November or December and purchase a gift for that gender and age child. Then, bring it back to the Toy Corral at New Horizons Fellowship by December 5. Also, many local churches and businesses have trees with tags available for pickup as well.
How can I coordinate my organization’s partnership with the Christmas Store?
Connect with the Christmas Store to request tree tags for your organization, or to arrange donations of toys, finances or special items. Complete this form to receive contact from a partnership coordinator.
How can I volunteer to help on the days of the Christmas Store?
A large number of volunteers are needed to make the Christmas Store run smoothly. Volunteer shift times are listed below, and each volunteer is provided with orientation and a brief training at the beginning of each shift.
Each volunteer area has specific minimum age requirements for children volunteering without an adult. Children 12 years old or older can volunteer with a parent or guardian immediately alongside them in the same area at the same time.
Friday… 11:30am-2:00pm; 1:30-4:00pm; 3:30-6:00pm; 5:30-8:00pm
Saturday… 8:30-11:00am; 10:30am-1:00pm; 12:30-3:00pm; 2:30-5:00pm; 5:00-6:30pm
Volunteer registration for the Christmas Store typically opens by November. A link will be provided here when registration is available.