POINT PLEASANT BEACH — As the holiday season approaches, the Joan Valentine House is once again holding its annual Valentine House Holiday Store for residents on Tuesday, Dec. 12.
The deadline to deliver the gifts, which must be new, unused items, is Dec. 9.
“The Valentine House provides housing and support services for low-income adults with mental illness,” said a press release for the event. “The residents use ‘Valentine Bucks,’ [which are points they earn for going to programs, doing a good deed, taking care of their rooms, etc.] to shop at the ‘Holiday Store.’”
According to the press release, the house is accepting donations of new items, including but not limited to: pajamas, shirts, sweatshirts, jackets, wallets, pocketbooks, jewelry, dinnerware, candles, soap, hats, gloves, scarves, belts, kitchen items, personal care items, books, plates, bowls, games, toys, signs, beach items, summer equipment, board games and more.
Additionally, the house is requesting that this year, donors refrain from donating Christmas-themed items.
The day of the store, tables will be set up and the haul of donated items will be spread out for the residents to pick from, buying presents for their families, medical professionals, friends and themselves.
“They do have families, and some of the residents get to go home for Christmas and Hanukkah,” said Diana Farrell, the executive director of Joan Valentine House. “They go to different programs, like Preferred Behavioral Health…and they have friends there. They have their counselors there, case managers—that kind of stuff. And they like to buy gifts for them, but don’t have the money to buy it. So, we do a store for them.”
Ms. Farrell said that the community is very receptive to the event, with donations often filling the space in her office.
“We ask for donations from the community; and let me tell you, my office gets full,” she said.
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