Ten for Teens 2017
We’re well on our way to another successful year of giving every single teen in foster care in the Portland Metro area a $10 gift card!
But we still need YOU to help us meet our audacious goal!
You have two more days to get your $10 gift cards in the mail so we can make sure teens in foster care get a gift that is personal, memorable, and actually useful this year.
Why is this campaign so vitally important for the caseworkers working with teens in the Portland Metro area?
Teens are the most neglected groups when it comes to community holiday giving.
When companies and non-profits host a giving campaign, the community responds with incredible generosity, providing toys, games, and activities for little ones and school-aged kids. They are easy to shop for, right? And their stuff is usually affordable (and often on sale).
But it’s tough to find affordable gifts for teens.
That’s where the Ten for Teens campaign comes in.
We believe that a simple $10 gift card solves this problem.
Cards are hand-picked by caseworkers who know the young people on their caseload oftentimes better than anyone else so we can ensure these kids get a meaningful gift from their caseworker this year.
This might be the only gift these teens in the our child welfare system receive this Christmas, as many teens in care live in group homes.
These gifts will also go to teens currently living with their biological parents with a safety plan. Many of these parents simply do not have enough money to provide Christmas gifts for their kids, and a gift for their child from someone in the community is such an encouragement.
There are approximately 832 teens (ages 12-20) in foster care in Multnomah, Clackamas, and Washington counties, which means we need a whole lot of you to step up to meet this enormous need.
Ready to give? Here’s what to do:
Purchase one or more $10 gift cards.
Here are some suggested establishments:
- Dutch Bros.
- Taco Bell
- Best Buy
- Bath & Body Works
- Fred Meyer
- Google Play
- Old Navy
- Coldstone Creamery
- Game Stop
- Regal or Century Theaters
- Black Rock
Or anywhere else you think a teen (aged 12-20) might enjoy. The gift cards will be hand-picked for kids by their caseworkers, so your choice doesn’t have to be entirely generic. You are welcome to get creative.
Please keep in mind that often teens in foster care don’t have extra spending money, so don’t get a card from, say, Nordstrom or Pottery Barn. It probably won’t be very useful. Also transportation is difficult for some, so if you select a small business (which is awesome), make sure it’s located in the Portland Metro area so a teen in that area can easily get there.
You are welcome to have the gift cards mailed directly to Frugal Living NW if you are purchasing them online to save time and postage. I will assume that any gift cards that come are for this project and not an anonymous gift to me.
Please make sure you are sending an actual plastic gift card and not an emailed printable form with a barcode. A piece of paper is lame. Plastic is cool.
Write a personal message (optional).
The purpose of this message is to let your teen know that there is a real person, family, or group behind the gift card.
Let your teen know he is loved and special. Let her know your family is thinking of her this Christmas. It’s probably best to do this in a note or greeting card (a Christmas card would be perfect). Feel free to have your kids or grandkids draw a picture to go along with your card.
No religious messages, such as “God loves you” or “God has a plan for your life” or “We’re praying for you,” please. It’s fine to use greetings that include “Christmas.”
Stick the gift card inside the greeting card/note and put it in an UNSEALED, UNMARKED envelope. If you seal it, we will have to open it and make your envelope look all trashy, so just don’t seal it.
This step is optional. You are absolutely welcome to send gift cards without messages. We have a group of women making cards just for us this week!
Mail your gift card(s) and message(s) by December 13, 2017.
Now put your envelope in a larger one and mail it off! We (Frugal Living NW) will collect the gift cards and deliver them to the folks at Embrace Oregon, who will then distribute them to the caseworkers at the DHS offices in the Portland Metro area. Please mail your gifts to:
Frugal Living NW
1425 NE Cochran Dr
Gresham, OR 97030
If you a purchasing a large number of gift cards (10 or more) and would like a receipt for tax purposes, please include a self-addressed, stamped envelope in your package and we will provide one to the name on the envelope. Your receipt will come in time to complete your 2017 taxes (January 31, 2018).
Please DO NOT hand deliver or mail your gifts directly to a DHS office. We (Frugal Living NW and Embrace Oregon) have a system set up to distribute these gifts in a way that doesn’t create extra work and confusion for the staff.
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