Any group can hold a “Birthday Bag Blitz” — civic groups such as Rotary, Girl or Boy Scouts, schools, churches, residence halls, elderly, teens, families, etc. It can be a one-time event or held periodically. The blitz is an opportunity to have a hands-on volunteer experience by filling birthday gift bags with toys which are distributed to shelters and food shelves so that less fortunate parents can recognize their child’s special day.
The blitz is held at your location — in your home, school, church, meeting room, etc. The group can be any size from 2 to 200 people involved and ages 5-95. Sometimes a blitz is done as part of a birthday party celebration. The number of birthday bags to be filled is usually based on your budget or how many donations you expect to receive.
Here’s what you need to do:
- Determine the size of your group – how many people do you expect to participate?
- Establish a budget – Plan to spend about $10 for each birthday bag which will include ten new items (such as small plush toy or book, ball, crayons, puzzles, stickers, etc.), a gift bag, ribbon and birthday stickers. All items should be for kids ages 3-12. Contact us if you would like us to order all of the items needed and have them sent to you at $10 per bag.
- As a guideline, a group of 25 people will easily fill 500 bags in an hour.
- Choose a date, time and location.
- Determine where you will take the bags after they are filled. Within the Twin Cities, refer to the list of shelters and food shelves. Outside of the Twin Cities and in other states, do an internet search of food shelves or shelters in your community. Call to explain what you plan to do and ask if they will distribute the gift bags for you. Arrange a convenient time to drop them off.
The Day of the Event – A Birthday Bag Blitz
- The person in charge should arrive early for set-up. If you’re expecting 20 or fewer volunteers, you can use two long tables (for more than 20 volunteers, use four tables). At the head of one table place the gift bags and any donations that you have. On the second table put the ribbons and several pairs of scissors. You will need to have several cardboard boxes ready in which to transport the bags to shelters. Put up “Cheerful Giver” signs in the area.
- About four people should be stationed at the ribbon table. As the bags are filled, they should be placed on the ribbon table where ribbons are tied to close them. Bags are then placed in the cardboard boxes.
- Take photos during the Blitz which can be sent to us for possible use in our newsletter and/or on our website. Send to firstname.lastname@example.org
- When all bags have been assembled, count and record the number of bags completed on our website or contact email@example.com. We need to know how many bags were filled, where you took them and how many volunteers were involved.
- Thank all the volunteers and remind them of the impact they are having on the lives of children in need and their parents.
For further information, please contact us at firstname.lastname@example.org.