Christmas can be a financially and emotionally challenging time for families already concerned about money. In this article, you’ll learn all about the ways you can get free gifts and food in Scramento County, California.
Some parents get burdened by medical bills, credit card debt, and unexpected job loss thereby finding them forced to look for creative ways to celebrate the holiday season.
Fortunately, there are various ways to get free toys this holiday season, whether you demonstrate financial need or just want to save some money.
The Salvation Army runs a yearly Angel Tree Christmas Assistance Program for families with or without children. Families can apply to receive a holiday food basket, and children under 12 are also eligible for some free, fun Christmas toys.
The program also operates a hotline to answer any of your questions about this service. Call (916) 669-2302 for more information.
Families receiving holiday assistance from the Salvation Army will also be eligible to receive a free, gently-used, artificial Christmas tree through California Backyard. Ask about receiving a tree to help make this Christmas a little bit brighter for your family.
Sacramento Public Library
The Sacramento Public Library hosts an array of free events throughout the entire year for adults, teens, and children alike. Stop by the North Sacramento Hagginwood location on November 18th, 2017, for a fun seasonal craft.
All supplies are free of charge, and your child will leave with a lovely craft perfect to keep or give as a gift. Take a look at their monthly event listing for more fun classes.
Marine Toys for Tots
Marine Toys for Tots is another great option for families needing a little extra help this Christmas. By filling out a simple online form, you’ll know instantly if you’ve been approved for assistance.
Children 14 years of age and younger are eligible to receive a brand new, unwrapped toy this Christmas.
The Stanford Settlement is running a program to provide free Christmas baskets to families in need. Applications are open until the second week of December, depending on availability.
Heads of household must apply in person at 450 West El Camino Ave., so be sure to bring along all of the proper documentation.
Sheriff’s Toy Project
The Sherrif’s Toy Project proudly serves upwards of 7,500 families during Christmas time with toys for children in need. The Toy Project helps the community in other ways by refurbishing old computers which are then donated to schools, and repairing bicycles which are given to families in times of crisis throughout the year.
Carmichael Park hosts an annual tree-lighting ceremony on December 7th, 2017, an event free to all families. Kids can enjoy a craft project while parents listen to some live music by the River City Concert Band.
After a visit with Santa (with the donation of one canned good per child), bask in the glow as the Christmas lights are flipped on at 6:15 p.m. This year, attendees will also be treated to a flurry of snowflakes!
Free Christmas Food in Sacramento County
Union Gospel Mission
Union Gospel Mission offers free food baskets year round to those who qualify. For more information on how to sign up for a special Christmas food box, give them a call at (916) 447-3268.
Sacramento Food Bank
The Sacramento Food Bank serves the community all year with fresh produce and meals to get you through the unpredictable days. They also provide those in need with an abundance of different services, including immigration assistance and adult education.
Clothing donations allow the Sacramento Food Bank to keep our community safe from the cold during the holiday season. Articles of clothing can be picked up once a month, completely free of charge.
Visit before Christmas to pick up some items to serve as gifts for your loved ones.
Central Downtown Food Basket
Central Downtown Food Basket has been serving the downtown and surrounding Sacramento areas since 1983. In addition to food, the CDFB also provides hygiene products and clothing to those in need.
Pick-up locations can be found in Midtown, Rosemont, and River Park. Special services are also set aside for senior members of the public.
River City Food Bank
River City Food Bank offers food pickup every Saturday from their Midtown location at 1800 28th Street. Not sure if you qualify? CalFresh staff are ready to help you apply to start receiving your benefits.
Check out their application assistance schedule to find a time that works best for you at one of their eight different screening locations.
Daughters of Zion
Daughters of ZioDaughters of Zion offer food assistance programs every Thursday. Locals who are food insecure can pick up food once every 30 days.
Additionally, Daughters of Zion run a clothes closet, where people in need can pick up gently used clothing as often as they like. Call (916) 422-4975 for more information.
Sacramento Pet Food Bank
The Sacramento Pet Food Bank wants to make sure that your four-legged friends aren’t suffering this holiday season. While you can’t put a value on the companionship of a pet, it can be difficult to keep up with the additional mouths that need feeding.
There’s no need to prove eligibility to receive free pet food, but supplies are very limited.
Christmas should be a time of joy and happiness for everyone, regardless of what their bank accounts look like. For Sacramento County residents, there are a ton of options as mentioned above for events and assistance that will make your Christmas this year truly wonderful.
We hope this article has been helpful for you. Please share it with anyone who you think will appreciate the information!