Holiday Enchantment — November 18, 2009

Heart of Rockford businesses kick off holidays

Healthcare product drive to benefit North Kent Service Center clients

Grand Rapids ranks as one of the nation’s more philanthropic communities, and Rockford is certainly well-known for its support of charity events, food drives, faith-based initiatives, and support of nonprofits near and far. This rings especially true at the holidays, when families and businesses dig deep to buy toys, fill food baskets, and “adopt” members of the community who need extra help.

The Heart of Rockford Business Association is one such group that supports numerous charity events throughout the year, including Rockford’s Relay for Life/American Cancer Society, Think Pink/Susan G. Komen for the Cure, Community Unity, and silent auctions and walkathons for multiple causes. This holiday season, the group decided on a somewhat alternative way to lend their hand.

Heart Steering Committee member and Baskets in the Belfry owner, Polly VonEschen, explained, “Families relying on federal assistance cannot use WIC dollars to purchase basic healthcare items like shampoo, soup and deodorant, and food pantries and community service centers typically don’t receive these types of donations. As a result, many of our Heart businesses have set up collection bins in their stores and are offering some sort of gift or reward to customers who donate for their generosity. All of our donations will be sent to the North Kent Service Center to help residents in our community.”

Acceptable products include toothpaste, toothbrushes, razors, shaving cream, shampoo, conditioner, lotion, bath gel, soap, and any additional items for cleanliness. Gifts will be accepted through the holiday season. For further details, contact one of these Heart of Rockford Business Association members: A Charmed Life Nail Salon, Aunt Candy’s Toy Co., Baskets in the Belfry, Bow-Dacious Designs, The Candle Shop, The Corner Bar, Creative Concepts Plus, Custard by the Dam, Dam Dogs, Frame & Mat Shop, G. Williker’s, Great Northern Trading Co., Gremel Communications Inc., Imperial Computer Solutions, Independent Bank, J.T. Stitchery & Frame Shop, Jade, Kimberly’s Boutique, Paperdoll, Pegasus Sports, Poindexter’s Specialty Marketplace, Reading Books, Reds on the River, Right at Home, Right Up Your Alley, Rockford Flower Shop, Rockford Independent, The Rockford Squire, Rogue River Tavern, Rudy Kazoody’s, Sage & Roses, WAR Chest Boutique, Ward’s Hair Place, and Xscape Salon.

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