COLUMBIA — It’s last call for the community to sponsor a family this holiday season for the Voluntary Action Center’s Christmas program.
Last Wednesday, the center reported it needed to find sponsors for 250 families by the end of the day, Tuesday. The organization is still 80 sponsors short of reaching that goal, as of Tuesday afternoon.
"We can’t really do much else," said Ron Schmidt, project director with the Voluntary Action Center. "We’ve tried everything we can think of."
The center strives to have letters informing families of sponsorship sent out before Thanksgiving. In 29 years, the center has never missed that deadline. This year, the earlier Thanksgiving holiday has made it harder to reach that objective, he said.
"We will take sponsors until all of the families are sponsored," Schmidt said.
Despite the disappointment of not filling all spots by the expected date, Schmidt is confident that all families who need holiday help will get sponsors eventually. People call after the deadline every year asking to be on the list, he said.
"In 29 years we’ve never had to tell a family no, and we’re not going to start doing it now."
Anyone interested in sponsoring a family can call the Voluntary Action Center at 874-2273 or email firstname.lastname@example.org