Grand Island's Habitat for Humanity needs Christmas cookie bakers.
On December 2, the housing program will have its annual Christmas Cookie Walk fundraiser. In preparation, Habitat is recruiting approximately 250 bakers who will donate holiday cookies to be sold at the event. Their goal is to have 12,500 cookies for sale.
However, Habitat is facing a recruitment problem. With so many people switching from land-line phones to cell phones, much of the contact information they have for volunteers and potential volunteers isn't current anymore. That leaves them hoping past donors will call, while searching out new volunteers through social media.
"We sent out a postcard to many of our previous donors, but they are used to us calling to confirm a donation," said Dana Jelinek, Habitat's Executive Director. "We've found we have a high percentage of discontinued phone numbers in our records."
The Christmas Cookie Walk has been an annual event since 2003. It's grown from 7,000 cookies for sale in the first year, to between 10,000 and 12,000 cookies each year since. Annual sales range between $4,000 and $4,800 for the one-day sale.
In addition to being a fund raising event, the Christmas Cookie Walk has become part of many people's holiday traditions. Individuals attend alongside families, as they purchase home-made treats for their holiday platters. They also enjoy other activities, including trivia give-aways for those waiting in line to get in. Buyers are given carry-out boxes and plastic gloves so they may select their cookies which are sold by the pound.
"Colorful, festive and fun holiday cookies are the best sellers at this event because that's what people want to share at Christmas," added Jelinek.
Currently, recruitment is behind schedule. Only those who would like to donate again or for the first time should call the Habitat office at 308-385-5510 for further information.
The cookies will be accepted on December 1 between 4 and 8 p.m. at the Family Life Center at St. Paul's Lutheran Church. The event will be the following day from 1 p.m. to 2:30 p.m. at the same location.