An Overview of the Adopt-A-Family Program
Each holiday season, "I Have a Dream" seeks community members to "adopt" Dreamer families to help provide them with gifts and brighten their holiday celebrations. The families range in size from two to ten members. Each Dreamer and his or her family submit a "wish list" of gift ideas that are approximately $30. Donors are matched with wish lists and then gifts are distributed to the families, often at school holiday parties.
We also offer the option to Adopt-A-Center which allows supporters to donate items to one of our nine learning centers throughout Boulder County. Donations made toward the Adopt-A-Center initiative will benefit over 50 Dreamers and guests who utilize those facilities year-round, after school and during the summer.
In 2014, we also started the Adopt-A-College Dreamer program to involve our Dreamer alumni who are away from home and in college, by sending them care packages. It was wonderful to witness the different ways community members put together creative packages to support our college Dreamers during their finals.
History of A-A-F: The Adopt-A-Family Program began in 1999, when 10 University of Colorado—Boulder departments and a number of individuals and private companies helped to provide much-needed gifts to 77 low-income Dreamer families. Since then, the program has continued to grow. Outside companies, private donors, and "I Have a Dream" board members and mentors, among other volunteers and community members work to fulfill the needs of all the Dreamer families.
A huge thanks to everyone who participated in the 2015 Adopt-A-Family gift drive! Over 1,100 Dreamers and family members received gifts last holiday season through the gift drive, with over 250 community members and groups participating. All of our sites received donations through the Adopt-A-Center program, and seven Dreamers who are freshmen in college received care packages for their first semester of college through our Adopt-A-College Dreamer program.