When I was growing up, Halloween was one of my favorite holidays. I have so many memories with my sisters, of us running door to door, shouting “trick or treat”, and filling our pillow cases with candy.
There was much preparation for this special night! One of our family traditions was decorating an old pillow case to collect our candy in. We treated our pillow cases like Picasso paintings, and spent so much time making sure it looked perfect.
Halloween also entailed researching the perfect costume, and then going from store to store to buy the costume and accessories. Or, if we were feeling extra creative that year and wanted to make our costumes, we had to purchase the supplies to create it. I always took my costume very seriously! One of the best Halloween memories I have was when I dressed up as Madeline from my favorite book series. While trick or treating, I bumped into a group of high schoolers who were also dressed as Madeline! We took a group photo together, and they were SO sweet to me.
As a child, one of the best parts of Halloween was bringing my costume to school and walking in my elementary school’s Halloween parade. I still remember in 3rd grade, one of the students in my class did not have a costume to change into. We all took turns running to the bathroom and transforming into our character of choice. This young boy sat in his seat and looked down, as other kids in my class began asking him what character he was dressed up as for the parade. Luckily, our caring teacher brought in a few extra costumes so kids that did not have a costume could still join in on the fun. The boy’s demeanor changed immediately, and he changed into his new costume. I remember he was so happy take part in the festivities after feeling left out.
After school was filled with even more fun. Our town always hosted a children’s Halloween parade downtown, where all the kids in our neighborhood walked downtown and had the opportunity to show off their costumes. I was so excited for this – two parades in one day! At the end, businesses and organizations had tables set up, and they dropped candy in our bags.
Next was an evening of running as fast as we could from house to house. The quicker we went, the more candy we would get! We always had to stop at our neighbor’s and friend’s houses for a few pictures and a treat. And if you lived in Pitman, NJ (where I grew up), you know exactly where we went for dinner. There were 2 houses in a row on Oakcrest Avenue: one served hot dogs while their next-door-neighbor served soda.
When curfew hit, the fun did not end… It just began! It was sorting and trading time. My sisters and I would sort our candy and trade each other for our favorites.
When I think about these wonderful childhood memories of mine, my heart breaks for all the children that won’t be able to partake in Halloween, just because they cannot afford a costume. Some people might suggest these children make something at home, but the reality I have witnessed since starting Angels of God, is alarming. Making a costume seems frugal, but isn’t always possible. Most of our clients don’t have access to basic craft supplies, especially if they are living in a homeless shelter, and unfortunately buying glue, scissors, or whatever else their child would need to make a costume isn’t a priority.
Families struggle to feed their children and pets.
Families have to choose between paying a bill and putting gas in their car so they can get to work.
Families struggle to provide the simple necessities, such as toiletries and cleaning supplies.
Families struggle to keep warm in the winter months.
And occasionally you see a parent that simply does not care, which I think is the worst case of all.
Should the child miss out?
Halloween is an important event in a child’s life. It provides fun memories! This is why Angels of God will be hosting its 7th annual Halloween Costume Give-A-Way Outreach THIS SUNDAY Oct. 23. Local children in need or living in homeless shelters have been invited for some Halloween fun! The kids will get to pick out their favorite costume to show off on Halloween, enjoy a little lunch and decorate a pumpkin.🎃
None of this would be possible without your generous donations!
YOU STILL HAVE A FEW DAYS LEFT TO HELP👍 We are collecting the following items:
-Halloween Costumes (All Sizes – new and used)
-Hot dogs (turkey/beef) 350 needed
-Hot dog rolls – 350 needed
-Bags of chips – 400 needed
-Halloween Cup Cakes – 350 needed
DROP OFF TIMES
• Wed. Oct. 19th 2016 9am-12noon
• Sat. Oct. 22nd 2016 9am-12noon (LAST DROP OFF DAY)
Angels of God
334 South Broadway
Pitman, NJ 08071
Questions? Txt/Call 856-625-8652
THANK YOU so much for your support! 👼
Founder of Angels of God www.angelsofgod.org