Volunteers of America Delaware Valley bringing joy to families in need this Christmas

PHILADELPHIA (WPVI) -- Volunteers of America Delaware Valley hopes to bring joy to thousands of people in need this Christmas.

"For a lot of these families, they're deciding between food and gifts for the kids or rent and Christmas gifts. So to take the worry away from them is a really big deal," says Rebecca Fuller.

The Adopt-A-Family program matches each family with a donor, the donor then purchases items from the family's wish list.

"This year we hope to help about 900 families through about almost 400 donors," says Fuller. "There's nothing like when you pull out giant bags and boxes for the family, or for sure, the show stopper is when we wheel out bikes. That's when really the tears start flowing for all of us really."

"I'm really so happy because I just had a baby and it's going to be so hard with a newborn and then two other kids, and I don't want them to feel left out. This program just helped me so much," says recipient Frances Sequinot.

"It's me and my two sons, Benjamin and Liam. A lot of the little things excite them. They're pretty much grateful for anything. So to have this is even better," says Melissa Smith.

The families range in size from a single child up to a household of 12, and the donors go above and beyond to make all of the holiday dreams come true.

"We got gifts, presents, toys, but also clothing, some bath essentials, basic needs and then gift cards to food stores," says donor ----------

"A family of six might have 10 large trash bags full of gifts and toys," says Fuller. "It really is heartwarming to see so many donors wanting to come out and help the program.

6abc donated a $5,000 check to the program at BEN-FM's annual Adopt-A-Family radiothon.

"The partnership with 6abc has been, I think the best word is, important to us," Fuller says. "It's allowed a lot of other people to hear about the program and want to participate in the program.

The organization also gives back year-round through various programming.

"We run family shelters, homeless veteran shelters, re-entry programs, addiction treatment programs, lots of affordable housing and really just trying to help people in the Delaware Valley," says Fuller.

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