UHV Giving Tree to support three local charities

Community members and University of Houston-Victoria faculty, staff and students who want to make a difference in the life of a person – or even an animal – this holiday season can once again drop off donations under the UHV Giving Tree.

The donation drive benefiting Adopt-A-Pet, Crossroads Youth and Family Services, and Mid-Coast Family Services will kick off from 10 to 11 a.m. Monday when community members and UHV employees can help decorate the Giving Tree and place their unwrapped donations under it. The event will take place in the foyer of the UHV University Center, 3007 N. Ben Wilson.

“It’s a way for us to give back to the community, and these organizations can really use the support,” said Kristen Lindley, president of the UHV Student Senate, which sponsors the Giving Tree each year.   A complete list of all donations needed by the three organizations will be available at the event, but items range from small to large. Some examples are Q-tips, index cards, pet beds, coats, bath towels and all sizes of socks.

“Donors don’t have to spend a lot of money to help out,” Lindley said. “Inexpensive items can really help someone.”   This year, members of both the Student Senate and the UHV softball team will each donate a gift to the Giving Tree rather than giving holiday gifts to each other. Lindley also is a pitcher and designated player for the softball team.

Community members and UHV employees can leave their donations under the tree during regular business hours through Dec. 15. This is the fifth year of the UHV Giving Tree. Each year, the Student Senate selects two or more organizations to help.

Mid-Coast Family Services was selected for the second time for the Giving Tree because it helps individuals and families in the Golden Crescent area by eliminating family violence, homelessness and substance abuse. Donations from the Giving Tree will be used specifically for the organization’s family violence shelter, said Ginny Stafford, the organization’s chief executive officer.

“The items will go directly to these victims as they’re trying to recuperate from the violence in their homes,” she said. “We appreciate any help that UHV and the community can give us.”

Adopt-A-Pet provides a no-kill animal shelter and adoption service in Victoria, and Crossroads Youth and Family Services supports at-risk children and their families in South Texas.

The University of Houston-Victoria, located in the heart of the Coastal Bend region since 1973 in Victoria, Texas, offers courses leading to more than 80 academic programs in the schools of Arts & Sciences; Business Administration; and Education, Health Professions & Human Development. UHV provides face-to-face classes at its Victoria campus, as well as an instructional site in Katy, Texas, and online classes that students can take from anywhere. UHV supports the American Association of State Colleges and Universities Opportunities for All initiative to increase awareness about state colleges and universities and the important role they have in providing a high-quality and accessible education to an increasingly diverse student population, as well as contributing to regional and state economic development.

Paula Cobler