DMC Employees Share Holiday Spirit with Soroptimist Tree Kids
By Jacqui D. Sinarle
Employees at Doctors Medical Center are overflowing with holiday spirit. In addition to providing gifts for their own families and friends, they have a holiday tradition of giving gifts to local kids they don’t even know through the Soroptimist Community Christmas Tree. “DMC has been participating in this program for many years,” said Carin Sarkis, chief business development officer. “Our employees look forward to it every holiday season!”
The community Christmas Tree provides presents to thousands of local children age 7 and under who might not otherwise receive a gift at Christmas or any other time of the year. The program is sponsored by Soroptimist International of Modesto North and Modesto Vintage Faire Mall, and KHOP 95.1 FM.
The tree is displayed on the upper level of Vintage Faire Mall and decorated with tags, each bearing a child’s first name, age, male/ female, clothing and shoe sizes, a Christmas gift wish, and a needed item (children are referred by local agencies based on need and economic situation).
“We typically draw 50 to 75 names from the tree,” Sarkis said. “Employees often work in small groups to provide the kids with items they need, as well as some items from their wish lists. Clothing, warm jackets, shoes, and pajamas are typically given to all the kids, and bikes, toys, books, music, and games are also common. Two years ago, employees gifted more than 20 new bicycles!”
Some employees participate as individuals and get their own children involved, Sarkis noted. “In my family we started a new tradition: rather than buying gifts for one another, we pull names from the tree and shop for them instead.”
While DMC contributes to many worthy causes during the holiday season and throughout the year, its employees use their own funds to purchase items for the Community Christmas Tree.
“It’s an easy and impactful way to give during the holiday season and a great way to involve the whole family in providing a happier holiday for families who struggle to do so,” said Sarkis. DMC employees are also on track to log more than 12,500 hours of community service by the end of 2016.
“Our employees are the most dedicated, caring, and amazing people and we are so proud to work with them,” Sarkis added. “The Community Christmas Tree allows their generosity of spirit to benefit children they will never meet, and that makes us all feel blessed and helps us kick off the holiday spirit.”
You can visit the Soroptimist Community Christmas Tree between Nov. 19 and Dec. 18. Soroptimist members will be available for assistance from 10 a.m. to 9 p.m. most days, with limited hours on Nov. 19, 20, 23, 26 and 27 (closed for Thanksgiving on Nov. 24).
Purchases must be returned to the tree for wrapping and delivery. To insure that every child receives a gift, tax-deductible cash donations are also accepted and used to purchase gifts for tags that remain on the tree. Donations may be made in person or mailed to: Soroptimist Community Christmas Tree, PO Box 1353, Modesto CA 95353.