Joy to the World, One Child at a Time

If we could harness the smiles of joy from the children and their families who attended the 26th Annual Homeless Children’s Party and convert it to electricity, we could light many future nights no matter how dark some of those nights may be.

Steiner and other companies held toy drives to collect presents for the holiday party.
Steiner and other companies held toy drives to collect presents for the holiday party. All Photos: Antonette Favia, Villa Park Electrical Supply

On a snowy, blustery Saturday morning, a record number of children and their families were transported from their temporary residences at seven Chicago-area homeless shelters to the James Jordan Boys & Girls Club in Chicago. In all, more than 250 children and 100 family members were treated to a festive Christmas party sponsored by the Chicago Electrical Industry (CEI). The girls and boys ranged in age from newborns to 16 and older. Most of the children were under 10-years old.

Each child received a gift from Santa, ably assisted by Mrs. Claus and a record number of volunteer elves. The gifts were collected during the annual Steiner Electric Toy Drive, and similar toy drives at other CEI companies. In addition to getting gifts and meeting Santa, the children and their family enjoyed a holiday meal of turkey with all the trimmings.

Volunteers wrap presents for the children attending the Christmas party.
Volunteers wrap presents for the children attending the Christmas party.

After every child received a gift, Santa and Mrs. Claus exited the hall with a trail of happy, but exhausted, children in their wake.  As the families departed, volunteers thanked them for coming and gave them a goodie bag to take with them as they were transported back to the shelters.

Through donations from CEI members, all the day’s expenses were covered. Excess funds will be used to buy much needed items for the shelters whose residents attended the party. In year’s past, the CEI has provided computers, printers, mattresses, and linens to these facilities. Additionally, the remaining gifts were donated to the Hesed House in Aurora. The shelter provides food, housing and other necessities to those in need.

2017 Company Toy Drives
Steiner Electric
Continental Electric
C&C Power, Inc.
Illinois Business Communications, Inc.
Maron Electric
Houston Wire & Cable
Allied Machine & Engineering Corp.
Electri-Flex