Staff Photo: Erin Evans
The paper stockings represent gift donations for local underprivileged children. The public can pick a paper ornament and bring the requested gift back to Johnson Park in time for Christmas.
TOPEKA -- Healthy Families is just one Topeka-area program that Red Stocking Breakfast supports. Child abuse prevention efforts and education campaigns, the availability of mental health services for children and families and the Parent Helpline (1-800-CHILDREN), are all made possible thanks to Red Stocking Breakfast funds.
While many of these programs are federally or state funded, and some receive additional support from United Ways and other grant sources, all rely on the Red Stocking Breakfast funds to fully serve their area.
KCSL prevention and education programs are designed to help keep children safe and families strong, according to Gail Cozadd, North Central Region Director for KCSL. “By helping families early, before problems arise, we increase the likelihood that at-risk children are raised in a safe and supportive home – which numerous studies show decreases the probability for negative childhood outcomes such as truancy and substance abuse.”
Red Stocking Breakfast is KCSL’s signature fundraising event. This year’s event will be held from 7:30 to 10:30 a.m. on Saturday, Dec. 11, 2010, at Carlos O’Kelly’s, 3425 S. Kansas Ave., Topeka. All proceeds will help support KCSL’s Topeka-area Prevention and Education programs. Carlos O’Kelly’s and U.S. Foodservice donate all the food for the breakfast; 100 percent of the funds raised benefit KCSL programs and services.
The event features a breakfast buffet served by local “celebrities.” Attendees also have a chance to win a week-long Caribbean cruise and a variety of “stocking stuffers” from Topeka retailers.
“Attending Red Stocking Breakfast is a way to help support children and families in the Topeka area, while having a great breakfast with family and friends,” said Monica Enloe, Development Manager for KCSL. “By attending a breakfast in your area you’re helping to ensure the future availability of programs that keep children safe and strengthen families.”
Tickets are $12 in advance or $15 at the door (children age 10 and under eat free). Advance tickets are available online at www.kcsl.org.
The Red Stocking Breakfast is a continuance of a tradition of holiday giving to the Kansas Children’s Service League that started more than 80 years ago. In the 1920s, the community was invited to make holiday gifts to children living at KCSL’s receiving home, a temporary residence for children awaiting a foster or adoptive home. These children would hang their “Little Red Stockings” in anticipation of the generosity of the community.