Community invited to give hope to homeless families this holiday season

HONOLULU (HawaiiNewsNow) - The community is invited to give hope to homeless and low-income families during the holidays through the Adopt A Family (AAF) program. The program connects individuals/families with community members and businesses that inspire joy through the fulfillment of the household's holiday Wish List of basic necessities. Often, the requested items are very basic items, like new clothing and footwear, household goods and other living necessities.

The goal of Adopt A Family is to ensure every household is adopted and to distribute gifts before Christmas. The program maintains a 100 percent adoption rate, and last year assisted 577 households consisting of 894 adults and 1,439 children.

Participating households are referred through a network of partnering agencies that specialize in working with individuals and families struggling with homelessness, poverty, domestic violence, disability and other life challenges that can seem overwhelming during the holidays. Individuals and families live in emergency shelters, transitional facilities and low-income housing and include senior, disabled and veteran individuals and their families with limited incomes and resources.

Community members interested in adopting a family must submit a Donor Information Form to or call (808) 440-3800 to complete one over the phone. In November, donors will receive a selection of families based on preferences listed on their forms, and donors may opt to adopt one or all of these families.

After confirming their selection, donors purchase items from the family's Wish List. Families who are not chosen return to the pool of participants seeking a donor. The family's Wish List is a guide for what they need most during the holidays, but final gift selection remains at the donor's discretion. When shopping is complete, donors deliver Wish List items to the Community Clearinghouse (CCH) at Helping Hands Hawaii, which is located at 2100 N. Nimitz Hwy. It is open on weekdays from 8 a.m. to 4 p.m. with extended hours through 6:30 p.m. from Dec. 5 through Dec. 9. Additionally, it will be open on Saturday (Nov. 26, Dec. 3 and Dec 10) from 8 a.m. to Noon. The deadline for donors to drop off their Wish List gifts is Saturday, Dec. 10, 2016.

Holiday Trees give the community an opportunity to participate in AAF without adopting an entire household. The trees display ornaments listing individual items commonly requested by families. Donors take an ornament off the tree, purchase the item listed on the ornament and return both the ornament and the gift to the Holiday Tree Host.

The items collected from Holiday Trees are used to fill the household Wish Lists of families who have not been adopted by a Community Donor.

To learn more about HHH, its programs or services, please visit

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