Blue Santa season begins

By BRITTANY FHOLER 

Cove Leader-Press 

 

Cove Blue Santa will begin collecting donated toys and gifts as well as monetary donations the first weekend of November for the 2020 Christmas season. 

This year marks 21 years since the Cove Blue Santa program started. Cove Blue Santa is part of the national Blue Santa program. It is a 501c3 non-profit organization. The goal for the Blue Santa program is helping families in need by providing Christmas presents to children 15 years of age and under.

Any family with children receiving government assistance, whether in the form of TANF, food stamps, Social Security Income, Medicaid or WIC, is eligible to fill out an application.  

Applicants must bring with them proof of residency of Copperas Cove or Pidcoke, a photo I.D., and proof of relationship to the child. 

Applications must be filled out at the Blue Santa office on Thursday, November 17, 9 a.m. to 2 p.m., 6 p.m. to 8 p.m.; Friday, November 18, 9 a.m. to 2 p.m.; and Saturday, November 19, 10 a.m. to 3 p.m. The last day for applications will be Wednesday, December 2, 9 a.m. to 1 p.m. and 6 p.m. to 8 p.m.

Masks are required in the Blue Santa office. Due to COVID-19, only the person applying for assistance is allowed at the time of application. 

Beginning November 7, Blue Santa will set up collection boxes for the donated gifts. The toys and gifts are for children 0 to 15 years old and should be new. The boxes will be found at different locations such as the Copperas Cove Police Department and some restaurants. If someone is interested in having a collection box, they are advised to contact the Cove Blue Santa program. 

Last year, the Cove Blue Santa program served 240 families and 630 children. 

“It’s the season of giving, and there’s many families out there struggling, and we look at it- sometimes it’s the children that suffer, and we don’t want them to suffer and not have a Christmas,” said Blue Santa Treasurer Kathy McCain. “We like to be able to assist those families in making their children’s Christmas brighter.”

McCain said that she anticipates a greater need due to the COVID-19 pandemic and said they are all “bracing” and expecting a greater demand. 

“We think that there are people that are suffering more financially,” McCain said. “Sometimes we have someone that will come through, and we may not see them again for three or four years.”

She added that is not always the same participants each year. 

“Many times a participant will come to us with tears in their eyes because we can assist them in helping them get their children something for Christmas that maybe they just didn’t have any extra funds for, and sometimes some people will come back and be our volunteers in the future years or actually donate stuff to us,” McCain said.

On Tuesday, October 20, the Cove Blue Santa organization received a check for $2,500 from the Cove Scottish Rite Club, and the Waco Scottish Rite Bodies matched the funds for a total donation of $5,000. 

Monetary donations such as this help volunteers in being able to go out and shop for items to fulfill a wish list from the applicants, McCain said. These donations are also tax-deductable for the donor. 

“We depend pretty much entirely on donations,” McCain said. “Occasionally, we ourselves as an organization will attempt to hold a fundraiser, but we’re funded through the generosity of organizations and individuals.”

Cove Blue Santa is located at 212 Cove Terrace Shopping Center in Copperas Cove. They also have a Facebook page. 

Copperas Cove Leader Press

2210 U.S. 190
Copperas Cove, TX 76522
Phone:(254) 547-4207