Patrons of the fifth annual Alternative Christmas Market, sponsored by the Neighborhood Congregational Church’s JOY (Justice, Outreach and You) Ministry, contributed $6,079 to 14 organizations with their purchses.
The tally follows: American Friends Service Committee, 26 bottles of olive oil for $520; Campaign for Female Education – school shoes for girls in rural Africa, 10 pairs for $250 and school clothing, five uniforms for $200; Central Asia Institute, 82 girls to school for a year in Afghanistan for $820; Church World Service, 14 flocks of chicks for $350; Concern America, $1372.50; Habitat for Humanity, $323; Friendship Shelter, $400; Jewish World Watch, 15 stoves for Darfur refugees, $300; Bear Hugs for AIDS orphans, 13 bears for $195; Millennium Village, 630 fruit tress for $315; Pacific Marine Mammal Center, a rescued sea lion fed for 12 days for $180; Partners in Health, 60 insecticide-treated bed nets for $200; World Vision, 38 soccer balls for $304; Equal Exchange, fair trade coffees and teas, $276; Creations by Clara, $54; Chris Boucher’s hemp wallets, $20.
The NCC Kids learned about giving this year under the creative direction of Mary LaRusso and with the help of a couple of Santa’s elves. They sold $85 worth of reindeer and snowman poop (malted milk balls and mini marshmallows). The proceeds were used to purchase a flock of chicks, 60 fruit trees, 2 soccer balls, and food for a rescued sea lion.
Though not included in the monetary total, a record number of 28 families were adopted through the Adopt-A-Family Program, organized by Lisa Tsufura.
Credit also goes to Barbara McMurray, who promoted the market, and Pam Wicks and Paul Dunne Dombrink, who provided music.