Hey there, time traveller!
This article was published 4/11/2012 (1394 days ago), so information in it may no longer be current.
I am sorry letter writer Janice Martens had such a bad experience delivering Christmas hampers (People lacking pride, Nov. 1). Certainly there are some people who take advantage of this program and some who do not have enough pride to try to work through their problems.
My wife's and my experience delivering hampers has been just the opposite. Starting with the positive and cheerful attitude of the people who volunteer and work at the depot right through to the recipients we have delivered to, we have found it to be humbling.
The majority of people were thankful, grateful and courteous to us. Sure there were a few questionable types, but too few to mention. Some areas of the city we deliver to are a surprise. In keeping with the spirit of the season, it is not for us to judge.
I hope the poor experience that Martens, and possibly others, had delivering those hampers does not dissuade them from giving it another shot. I wish there were no need for hamper deliveries, but there is. My wife and I again look forward to being a little bit of help to some, while counting our own good fortune.
My husband and I also deliver hampers at Christmas time and have witnessed expensive possessions in people's homes.
I would like to say, however, that as tempting as it is to assume people's motives, I am always reminded of my own desperate situation 20 years ago when I lived in a nice home with my family and unexpectedly found myself on my own, with my four young children, and the savings all but gone.
Even though I would have never dreamed of receiving a Christmas hamper, it was most humbling that someone put us on that list. I may have been judged when my hamper was delivered, but the truth was that the hamper truly blessed us at a time when most people, were not aware of the extent of our need and brokenness. It was a lift up until I could get on my feet and figure out a way to move on.
Because of that, when I am tempted to judge the recipients by what I see around them, I remind myself that I need to stay committed to my mission and that is to bless people with the hampers, and hope that in some way they are encouraged to move on.