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South Valley Journal

Nonprofit Organizations Combine Efforts For The Holidays

Dec 05, 2014 10:05AM ● By Shawna Meyer

The Candy Cane Corner helped 750 families receive Christmas gifts last year, which included 1,200 children.

Through Dec. 11, Riverton City Hall, 12830 South Redwood Road, will be operating as an official drop-off location for the Candy Cane Corner. Riverton residents can drop off their donations during office hours, which are Monday through Thursday 8 a.m. to 6 p.m. and Friday until 5 p.m.

The Road Home, Utah’s branch of Volunteers of America, and YWCA Utah have collaborated annually on this drive for 17 years. It provides Christmas gifts to many families who would otherwise go without.

The people behind the scenes at the Candy Cane Corner are looking for toys and clothing for children of all ages, clothing for teens and adults, household items and wrapping paper.

Once the donations come in, volunteers will set everything up in an empty storefront to make it look like a regular shopping center. Then, families who couldn’t otherwise afford it can go through the store and shop for their families for free.

Zach Bale has been the chief development officer at Volunteers of America for almost eight years. Before they launched Candy Cane Corner, each organization would hold its own charity event around the holidays, but each event would be very similar.

“We thought it would be better to pull all three of our agencies together and make one big thing happen,” Bale said.

The storefront space is donated each year, so its location changes. This year the U.S. Translation Company in Salt Lake City has donated its space, 200 South 300 West, to the cause.

Last year, the event helped 750 families, and a little over 1,200 children received gifts thanks to all of the volunteers’ efforts. Bale estimates that it took around 800 volunteers to make everything run smoothly last year.