Thank you for your interest in adopting a military or veteran family through our Holiday Adopt-a-Family Program. Below is a list of commonly asked questions to familiarize you with the program. If this does not answer your questions, please feel free to contact Laura Cooper at [email protected].
1. What am I expected to provide the families
For each family adopted, you are asked to provide a minimum of $50-$100 food gift card towards a holiday meal, depending on the size of the family, and gifts for each biological or step-child ages 18 and under, living at home and not yet graduated high school in the amount of $35 – $50. All toys/gifts must be new and age-appropriate. We ask that you wrap the gifts, unless otherwise indicated by the family. The gifts, along with the gift card for the holiday meal, must be shipped to your adopted family and received prior to the Christmas holidays. If you are in the local area of the family you have adopted, you may meet and exchange the gifts, but we ask that it not be at either your home or the military family’s home for your safety and theirs.
2. Can I provide gift cards to the children so that the families can pick out the presents?
No, we ask you to purchase gifts for the children that are on their wish lists. It is important for you to communicate with the family prior to purchasing the gifts to get a better understanding of what their children like and want.
3. How soon do I need to tell you that I want to adopt families?
Our goal is to match families as soon as possible in hopes to give you and the families enough time to plan. However, please note that the later you submit your request, the less likely that we will be able to match you with a family.
4. Can I choose the size of the family?
Yes, you can choose the family size that best suits your family or groups’ ability to support.
5. Can I adopt multiple families?
Yes, you can adopt up to 3 families as long as you can provide the minimum requirements to each family. We do not allow Angels to adopt more to ensure they can adequately provide for those they are supporting.
6. Can I specify the location of the families?
You can search for a family by home state, zip code, branch of service, and number of children. Keep in mind when searching if no results populate we may not have families in that search parameter available and you might have to refine your search criteria with less stringent parameters to find available families.
7. Do I need to contact my adopted family/families?
YES, you must contact your adopted family by phone or email within 48 hours of being placed with them. You will be provided their email address as well as their phone number. This is important to establish communication with your family. In the past, many of our military/veteran families did not hear from their Angel at all and were worried about not receiving the gifts in time for the holidays. We do not want to cause any undue stress for our military families by not communicating with them. If you are unable to reach your family please contact Laura Cooper at [email protected].
8. Can I purchase items for the parents?
Yes, you can purchase items for the parents but it is not required. You are asked to provide a gift card for the parents/guardians to help them purchase food for the holiday meal.
9. My adopted family has children over the age of 18 living in the home. Should I buy presents for them also?
Children are only eligible if they are living in the home, ages 18 and under and not yet graduated high school. It is up to you to decide if you want to purchase gifts for an older child but we make it very clear to the families that it is not likely or should not be anticipated.
10. The family has listed very expensive items on the children’s wish lists. Do I need to provide these items?
No, each family has been informed to include only wish list items ranging from $35 to $50 per child. Talk to your adopted family and find out other items that the child would want. You are under no obligation to purchase these expensive items for the child.
11. Can I wrap the gifts?
Please wrap your gifts, if you are able, unless the military family advises you otherwise.
12. My adopted family does not live close to me and I will need to send the gifts and gift card. Is there a special way to send these items?
No, it is your responsibility as the sponsor to ensure that the gifts and gift card reach the family before the holidays. You can send the gifts and gift card whichever way you choose, but we recommend that you mail the package in enough time to be received and that you obtain a tracking number in the event that the package gets lost. We ask that you mail the gifts and gift card no later than December 14, 2020, using trackable mail delivery service, to ensure that the packages will be received on time. The earlier the better to send the packages because of the holiday rush at the post office.
13. Can I ask the family over to my house?
We ask that you NOT invite the family to your home for dinner or presents nor accept an invitation from the family to visit their home. We want to ensure the safety of both our Angels and the families. We ask that you meet (if you are in the same location) at a neutral area to exchange gifts and meet the family in person. Some suggestions are a restaurant, parking lot of Walmart or Target, grocery store, etc.
14. I am a Team Angel but also part of a company/organization and I want to invite all of our families to a party we are having at our place of business. Can I do this?
Yes, you can invite them to the party, but it cannot be required of the family to participate in order to receive assistance. Some families may not be comfortable attending such a function. Please respect their decision.
15. Can I make the family dinner and bring it to them?
No, for the liability, safety, and comfort of our military families, we ask that you provide a gift card for the meal. If the family does not wish to cook and the Angel is comfortable with this, you can purchase a cooked meal from a local grocer and have the family pick the meal up directly from the grocer.
16. What if I want to adopt the family for the entire year? How do I do that?
Our program matches families with sponsors for the December Holidays only. The adoption does not extend beyond that timeframe.
17. How do you screen the families?
All families are screened for participation in our Holiday Adopt-A-Family program. Proof of service and financial need are both validated before a family becomes eligible for adoption.
18. How long does it take for me to be matched with a military family?
Once you register as a Team Angel and Adopt-A-Family is open, you can search for a family immediately. Families are added and made available for adoption as soon as they are screened and approved for the program. If you do not find a family available right away, please check back regularly because families are added every day during the application time period.
19. Do you give my information to the family when they are adopted?
No, once you adopt the family, we will send an email to the family letting them know that they are adopted. We do not give the family any of your information. It is your responsibility to contact the family within 48 hours of the adoption to let them know that you are their Angel for the holidays.
20. What happens if I cannot fulfill my obligation to the family that I have adopted?
If you are unable to send gifts and a gift card to the family due to personal reasons, please contact Susie Turner at [email protected] immediately and explain your situation. We must know so that we can get another Angel or sponsor for the family. We do not want the family to be left without gifts or a gift card once they have been notified that they were adopted.
Our goal is for you to have a positive experience with your participation in this program. If you have any problems or concerns, please contact Laura Cooper at [email protected] Thank you for your support and helping to put smiles on the faces of our military children this holiday season!