Celebrating 46 Years!
This entirely volunteer Christmas gift-giving program, sponsored and coordinated by Child and Family Services, Inc. State Office, began in 1971 by individuals who wanted to make a difference in the lives of children who reside in foster care. Recipients include infants, children, teenagers, and adults with disabilities. Over 5,700 children and youth are provided with gifts each year to open on Christmas morning and since 1971 more than 92,700 participants have had their Christmas wishes come true as a result of Operation Good Cheer volunteer efforts. Thousands of generous volunteers gather annually to participate in Operation Good Cheer. Donor groups and individuals purchase and wrap Christmas gifts from a child's "Wish List". At donor sites, these gifts are picked up and transported by volunteer trucking companies and their drivers to a centrally located airport. Pilots and drivers with their aircraft and vehicles transport the gifts to local airports across Michigan. At each airport, agency volunteers gather the gifts and deliver them to the children and youth in foster care. This impressive display of generosity provides thousands of youth, some of whom would not receive anything otherwise, with gifts and the joy of knowing there are people who care.
In 2016 we served...
5,733 recipients statewide (infants, children, teenagers, and adults with disabilities) affiliated with 70 agencies (private, nonprofit social service agencies & foster care, residential treatment, and group homes). We accomplished this through volunteer efforts of 257 donors (groups, organizations, and individuals), 27 transport companies that delivered 6,000 gifts, 25 airports and ground destinations state-wide, flights by 222 volunteer pilots that delivered over 11,000 gifts, and 500 volunteers at the departure airport on December 2nd and 3rd.