Thanks to the faithful support of volunteers, various Buckner Family Hope Center™ locations around Dallas hosted a Christmas Market allowing families to acquire gifts for their children during the holiday season.
The Christmas Market allowed Dallas families to shop for toys, clothes and household items using points they accumulated throughout the year by participating in Family Hope Center programs, such as family assistance, parent education, financial empowerment, counseling and other services.
“This is one way for us to congratulate families for the hard work they have done to strengthen their family,” said Robin Bruster, Buckner volunteer engagement director for Bachman Lake and West Dallas. “Whether it is an adult who has been in classes or coaching or a child who has been in after-school programming, the Christmas Market is a way for us to celebrate their dedication to meeting their goals.”
The Christmas Market also offered some relief to families who may have faced some financial burdens during the holidays.
But the success of the Christmas Market is dependent on the faithful volunteers, who not only help families shop for items and offer gift wrapping during the market but also walk alongside the families throughout the year in support.
“It is critical for Buckner to partner with volunteers,” Bruster said. “We couldn’t do the work we do without them. Volunteers help us multiply the work we are doing.”
Meredith and Kyle Bebee have been volunteering with Buckner for about 10 years and include their children in what they consider to be very important work.
“Part of our goal has been to show our children a tangible example of what it means to serve,” Kyle said. “Having a place like this, where serving can be a part of their life in a regular basis, gives us a model of who Christ is and what our faith should look like.”
The Bebee family have been a part of the Buckner Family Hope Center at Bachman Lake since the beginning.
“Our kids have been coming here since the building first opened and now they are very comfortable here,” Meredith said. “Seeing them in action makes up some of my favorite memories. My hope is that this will continue to be a part of life, and that they will continue to treat everybody as a child of Christ.”
The impact volunteers make is significant because any contribution, whether big or small, intensifies the quality of work and the effects of it, Bruster said.
“Volunteers bring unique skills and talents that enrich the programming we offer to families,” Bruster said.
There are many different opportunities throughout the year for volunteers, including many one-time commitments, so there is bound to be something to match a person’s interests, skill and schedule.
When families and groups of volunteers come together through service, everyone benefits and is strengthened.