Bellarmine’s Favorite Christmas Tradition: Adopt A Family

Christmas is, as the saying goes, the most wonderful time of the year. Most know the holiday season to be filled with love, light, and cheer. Though, the Bellarmine community recognizes that for many families, the holiday season is difficult. Whether that be because of loss, familial differences, or socioeconomic status, the holidays can feel hard.

That is why Bellarmine strives to provide the joy of Christmas to families in need each year. In 1991, Bellarmine introduced the Adopt-A-Family program which invites students and teachers to gather warm clothing, canned goods, pre-prepared meals, and staple items for the home like toilet paper, toothpaste, and towels to equip these families with what they need for the holiday season ahead. In addition to the essential goods these families may need, the Bellarmine community also prepares gifts for the families, taking stock of what each family dynamic looks like. Does this family have children? Are the children boys, or girls? How old are these children? From there, Bellarmine students dedicate their time and resources to pick out the perfect gifts for each family.

Last year, because of the pandemic, the Adopt-A-Family student delivery was canceled temporarily. This deeply saddened the Bellarmine community because Adopt-A-Family is an important part of our school culture.

Now that we are back at school full time, however, the Adopt-A-Family program has resumed and the Bellarmine community could not be more excited.

Senior Hana Gray said she was most excited for, “driving out and delivering because you get to go with your friends you have in your Formation class which makes the experience memorable and also giving the gift of Christmas to someone else is really special.”

Adopt-A-Family took place on Dec. 15, with freshmen and sophomores arriving on campus at 9 a.m. and delivering their gifts and goods to their families up until 11 a.m. and then juniors and seniors arriving on campus at 12 p.m. and delivering until 2 p.m.

The energy surrounding Adopt-A-Family throughout this past month has been high and incredibly positive. Ignatian Formation classes have spent hours upon hours preparing for Adopt-A-Family.

Sophomore Cole Tamurian said, “My Formation is gathering essential goods like food and house supplies and also gifts for the kids and parents and we are really excited.”

Over the last 30 years, Bellarmine has helped share the magic of Christmas with thousands of families. Thanks to the work of students, teachers, parents, and volunteers the Adopt-A-Family program models the true meaning of the word generosity.