UCAN Gift Drive 2018


Your Guide to Helping UCAN's Gift Drive

Many people collect gifts from friends and family to contribute to UCAN's Annual Gift Drive. We think these people are amazing and want to provide as much support as possible. Here you will find helpful tips and guidelines for making the most impact with your time and energy.
First, a little bit about us...
UCAN helps youth who have suffered trauma become our future leaders through a consistent presence, meaningful programming and unrivaled diversity. Founded in 1869, UCAN has evolved into one of Chicago’s most innovative social service agencies impacting over 13,000 at-risk children, youth and families each year.
Gifts donated through the drive will be distributed across 13 different programs including Professional Foster Parenting, Violence Intervention and Prevention Services, Counseling and Youth Development Services, and our Teen Parenting Services Network.

Key Things to Keep in Mind
- Donations must be NEW, not used
- Most needed items include
  • Baby (0-2 years) – pajamas, teething toys, educational toys, board books, etc.
  • Teen (13-18 years) – headphones, speakers, basketballs, soccer balls, sets of bath soaps and lotions, books, art supplies, etc.
  • Young Adults (18-21 years) - $25 and $50 gift cards to Target or Walmart for young adults living on their own for the first time
Your Best Tool
Click the "Start Fundraising" button at the top to create your very own Gift Drive page. There you can post all the information specific to your project. Examples of projects include hosting a holiday party and asking guests to bring donations, setting up a donation box at your school, or collecting gifts from friends and neighbors. Your page will be easy to share with friends and family through email and social media.
Great Tip 
On your Gift Drive page, try to answer the following 4 questions:
1. What types of gifts are you collecting?
2. How can people donate gifts to you?
3. What is your deadline for collecting gifts?
4. Why have you chosen UCAN to support?
After You Collect Gifts
Please drop off all gifts by Monday, Dec. 3, 2018 to UCAN Headquarters located at 3605 W. Fillmore, Chicago, IL 60624, Monday - Friday from 9am to 6pm. If you need to drop items off outside of these times, please contact Rebecca Brown, rebecca.brown@ucanchicago.org or 773.279.3733, to make arrangements. Gifts delivered after Dec. 3 will still be used but might not be distributed to our clients until after the new year.
UCAN IS NOT ABLE TO PICK UP DONATIONS. If you will not be able to deliver gifts, please consider having your friends and family purchase items from our amazon wish list, http://a.co/jgf3xu7. All items are shipped directly to our office!
1. Does UCAN accept monetary gifts for the Gift Drive?
  • Answer: YES, monetary donations are used to buy gifts, gift cards, and wrapping supplies. Cash is never given directly to a youth as a present. Checks can be made out to UCAN with "Gift Drive" in the memo line.
2. Do you accept used items?
  • Answer: NO, not for the Gift Drive. Sometimes we accept used items throughout the rest of the year for specific needs but we only accept new items for our holiday Gift Drive.
3. Is your office open on weekends?
  • Answer: NO, our office is open Monday through Friday from 9am to 6pm.
4. Is it worth dropping off items after Dec. 3?
  • Answer: YES!! Last minute donations always come in handy but we can't guarantee all late gifts will be distributed before the holiday. Our staff needs time to sort and organize gifts before distributing them. Also, many of our programs distribute gifts to their participants at holiday parties which are hosted at the beginning of December. But as we all know, the needs of our participants extend beyond the holiday season so extra donations are always helpful.
5. Who do I contact if I have more questions?
  • Answer: Rebecca Brown, Development Coordinator, at rebecca.brown@ucanchicago.org or 773.279.3733