WICHITA, Kan. (KSNW) – It takes several months for Operation Holiday to come together–that plus hundred of volunteers every day. Thursday morning, doors opened at 9 am to allow people in, but much of that wouldn’t be able to take place were it not for the hundreds of people who give their time to help people through.
One of those people is Shelitha Walker who values her ability to give back. “It’s good to receive, but it’s also good to help when you can…to volunteer at a lot of these different organizations because they need a lot of help to make these programs work and if you have the time, volunteer.” She understands the feeling of giving to others and how grateful they can be due to her role on both sides. The single mother of three has a child in and out the hospital frequently with a disability and relies on assistance to make ends meet. “I appreciate all the help that I receive through Operation Holiday,” Walker said, “and then to be a volunteer, it feels great, even greater, because I’m giving back and I’m helping somebody else and I know what people are going through.”
Organizers with Operation Holiday say having people volunteer is critical to what they do. “At any given time, there’s more than 200 volunteers along with all of our applicants, it takes a lot of hands to make this machine move,” said Ashley Davis. While there are certainly more needs that still need to be met, Davis says they are noticing some uplifting trends. “I’m seeing a lot of people saying no I really don’t need that, let’s leave that for the next person and that also is very heartening because, again, they’re realizing that there’s a need outside of themselves and they’re paying it forward a little.”
If you’re still interested in donating items, you can bring them to the warehouse near 2nd and Vine or drop them off at Dillons around the area through the weekend.