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Sharing Families falling short of sponsors

Heading into December, the Sharing Families Project is pleading for sponsors for families it aims to help this holiday season.

As of Friday morning, six families — a total of 24 people — remain "unadopted." The families range in size from seven to four people and include single-parent families, a dad off work due to an injury and a mom who had been unemployed and is now starting a new job.

The program's goal was to have all families "adopted" by Dec. 1 to give sponsors time to shop and meet the Dec. 14 deadline for dropping off gifts at the River Falls Journal office.

"Each year we worry that families will go unsponsored, but in the previous 29 years that has never happened," said Judy Wiff, president of the nonprofit's board of directors.

"We very much appreciate those who have already come forward to sponsor a family or families, but we do need more."

Thanks to carry-over funds and generous donations from businesses and individuals, the project has enough money to buy the groceries it promises for each of its recipient families. But getting the clothing and toys the families want will be more difficult.

Here are two examples of families still needing help:

-- A couple with five children ranging in age from 17 to 3 months. Both parents work, but the mom was off work for the birth of her youngest and they are struggling financially.

-- A single mom with three children, ages 12-4.

-- A single mom with a pre-teen daughter.

These are ways you could help:

-- Sponsor a family or child and buying the items they have requested. Those who decide to do that are asked to call the Journal main desk at 715-426-1054 or the Sharing Families dedicated line at 715-426-1054 or email

-- Add a child to your shopping list and buying a new toy, game or outfit for that child.

-- Make a donation of money to buy toys and clothing. (No cash will be given to families.)

All contributions are tax-deductible. Sharing Families is an IRS-approved 501©(3) organization.