There’s nothing quite like the winter holiday season.
Gifts are given. Joy is shared. The overall spirit of generosity is felt throughout any given community at any given time.
At one DeKalb County School District (DCSD) elementary school, every single student experienced this feeling thanks to one local nonprofit.
Indian Creek Elementarywelcomed The Love of Giving—a 501(c)3 nonprofit dedicated to helping homeless and underprivileged community members—in December 2018. The organization provided each of Indian Creek’s 800 students with a single gift to take home and enjoy.
“We came to put a smile on students’ faces. This is my Christmas!” said Katherine Miller, founder and executive director. “It’s such a joy to my heart to see them come in so excited about receiving gifts. This might be the only thing that some of these students get.”
Miller is thankful that The Love of Giving has the available resources to help DCSD students in need and spread joy around the holiday season. Last year, a team of volunteers dropped off a plethora of toys for students to take home, and she is proud to be able to repeat the gesture.
According to Miller, the Love of Giving is not just a name, but a feeling that permeates throughout the organization and causes it to grow. The delivery team on December 19 was made up entirely of volunteers who were ready, willing, and able to give toys to students—the majority of which were donated to the organization.
“This is the biggest year we’ve had. People help out once and want to come again, and they tell other people,” Miller said. “They want to help be a part in any way they can. It’s incredible. Who doesn’t want to see a child happy on Christmas? Everyone wants to see a smile on a student’s face.”
For Miller, the event is about aiding those who feel they don’t have aid, and noticing those who may feel neglected or ignored. Earlier this school year, Miller and a team of volunteers delivered more than 11,000 school supplies to the school.
“It’s so important to me,” Miller said. “Some of these kids don’t have any control over the condition they are in. If we don’t reach out, who will? I’m excited that we can reach out and help.”
Miller heard about Indian Creek approximately two years ago and has made the DCSD school a priority every holiday season.
“Ms. Miller makes sure everyone at Indian Creek has a holly jolly Christmas,” said Michelle DeShields, counselor at Indian Creek. “The hard work they do throughout the year—making sure every child goes home with a gift for Christmas and the holidays, making sure every child is ready to learn by filling classes with resources—is much appreciated. They’re here with us the whole year, every year. We appreciate the genuine love they have for giving.”