12 Days of Giving ~ Day 7

On Tuesday we went to UMOM to read with homeless children and do crafts with them at their holiday party.  UMOM is Arizona's largest family homeless shelter.  They serve over 140 families.  Every Tuesday they host a Read To Me night where 50-70 kids come and read books with volunteers while their parents have some free time to work on resumes, classwork to finish their GED, or just have a worry free place for their children to go.
Since this was the holiday edition of Read To Me we got to do Christmas crafts with the kids.  Hank I were at the reindeer making station, while Kaitlin and Karlie were at the snowman frame station.  Max was a reader for those kids that did not want to craft.  A little boy Hank's age sat with Max and loved doing I spy and reading Thomas the Train books.  As the night wore on and Hank got tired, he joined Max and Gavin.
It was a moving night for all of us.  At a time when we have so much, working with these kids that have so little was humbling.  Everyone of these children were so appreciative and had the best manners.  "Please pass the glue when you are done."  "Thank you."  "Can I please do a craft?"  Their manners stood in stark contrast to holiday parties I ran at Hank and Kaitlin's school on Friday.  Children who are blessed beyond measure with horrible behavior, never saying please, just grabbing and asking for more and more.  You would think it would be the homeless kids trying to sneak and take extra candy canes, but it was the Scottsdale kids that were trying to take extra.  We could all learn so much by walking in someone else's shoes for a day.  UMOM is one of our favorite giving days.  The kids really gain a lot working with kids their own age that have been dealt a very different set of cards in life.

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