Tulsa Nonprofit Looks For Help Providing Christmas Presents For Foster Kids

Tuesday, October 19th 2021, 5:28 pm
By: Sawyer Buccy

TULSA, Oklahoma -

A Tulsa nonprofit that buys Christmas presents for kids in foster care is asking for the community's help this year.

Volunteers want to do something good for kids who might not get a Christmas, so they're trying to find a space big enough to hold more than 2,000 gifts from November until January. 

"We have a lot of kids who come in who have never had a present on the holidays," said Evan Taylor, the Community Engagement Director for Fostering Connections. 

Fostering Connections makes sure foster families have what they need to care for their kids, and the need is there.

"We have had a child come in with onesie that was too small and one sock and that is all he had," said Chris Siemens, Executive Director for Fostering Connections. 

Every person working at Fostering Connections has a passion for kids in the foster care system.

"I have been volunteering since 2012, when I got my first placement," said volunteer Shelley Keefner.

Keefner has fostered more than 30 kids since then and adopted six of them. 

"My husband and I never thought that this was going to be what we were going to do," said Keefner.

She uses whatever free time she has to volunteer here.

"I just can't let it go, I just have to be here. I have to make sure that I do my part to make sure every child that is in foster care is taken care of," said Keefner.

Every Christmas, Fostering Connections organizes a gift program.

"A child will fill out a wish list and we match that with a sponsor," said Taylor. 

They usually help foster kids in four counties, but this year the need has grown.

"We just found out this week that we are serving 14 counties," said Taylor. 

Taylor said there are so many kids in foster care here in Oklahoma they are trying to serve this Christmas, they need a bigger space to hold all of the gifts.

"This year our need is pretty great for the 2,000-plus kids who we are trying to provide presents for and we need a space," Taylor said. "All the spaces we have used in the past are either not available or they have been rented out. It needs to be about 6,000 square feet, and up with bathrooms, electricity, easily accessible."

Volunteers are hoping someone might be able to help them do something good for thousands of Oklahoma kids this Christmas.

If you think you might be able to help, call Fostering Connections at 918-742-4947 or visit their website here.