Ho, ho, ho! Christmas comes to Crossroads

Salvador, a 12-year-old, held his new LEGO set high in the air, showing off his new toy to his buddies. Photo by Shelby Tankersley.
Salvador, a 12-year-old, held his new LEGO set high in the air, showing off his new toy to his buddies. Photo by Shelby Tankersley.

Every year, volunteers from around the state buy Christmas gifts for kids in the foster care system through Child and Family Services of Michigan’s “Operation Good Cheer” initiative. The kids at Crossroads For Youth in Oxford came back to their dorms after school on Dec. 20 and were greeted by a Christmas tree surrounded by gifts, courtesy of those volunteers.

The kids, many of whom are survivors of neglect and abuse, were given the toys, books, clothes and personal care items they were hoping for based on wish lists they filled out.

All of the guys in the Boys’ Center received blankets and bathrobes, and many of them put those bathrobes on immediately while they checked out their new goodies, which included LEGOs, Detroit Lions gear, new bikes and sketch books.

After the boys opened their gifts, they were treated to hot chocolate and holiday cookies.

They also spent the evening writing thank you cards to the anonymous Michiganders who granted their Christmas wishes.

This year, Child and Family Services of Michigan’s volunteers bought over 20,000 for kids around the Mitten who especially need to feel the love during the Christmas season.