Piperno family members and Christmas gifts for teens

Spreading Christmas Cheer

Every Christmas season, the Domenica Foundation supports the Sacred Heart Church Christmas basket program and the Guadalupe Family Services Christmas gift giving program. We’ve been participating in both since before we were officially established as a foundation!

We’re sponsoring 200 of the 1,000 food baskets Sacred Heart will distribute this year. Elena Piperno, now the foundation’s director, remembers giving out food baskets as a highlight of her childhood Christmases. Unfortunately, we can’t deliver the baskets to recipients’ homes this year because of COVID. Families will pick up their food on December 18.

We’re also sponsoring 20 teens in Guadalupe’s gift program. Lots of people like to buy toys and cute things for younger children. Sometimes the teens are forgotten. That’s why we stepped in to sponsor the program’s teenagers.

At the suggestion of Sister Helen Cole and Guadalupe staff, we balance practical items with things the teens want most, according to their caregivers. (Names are pseudonyms.)

  • Vincente, age 14, needs a new coat. He would love to receive volleyball or basketball gear. His favorite colors are red and blue.
  • Aliyah is hoping for nice outfits in blue, black, or gray, plus some books and art supplies. She is 14.
  • Tatiana, 18, sounds like she loves to look good! She’s asking for makeup and hair accessories. We’ll throw in a warm winter coat.
  •  Amar, 16, needs some comfortable clothes. His mother says he’s into anime. We had to rely on the younger Pipernos to pick something appropriate!

Armed with suggestions like this for 20 teenagers, along with clothing and shoe sizes, we went shopping last week. We hope “our” teens really like their gifts. We know their caregivers appreciate having Christmas presents for them—just as recipients of Sacred Heart’s baskets appreciate having good food for their holiday dinners.

rows and rows of Christmas food baskets
Guadalupe Family Services staff, Piperno family members pose with Christmas gifts for teens