CANASTOTA, N.Y. --- The Opportunity Shop helps provide for families in need throughout the village of Canastota. This year due to COVID the shop is closed, but it's mission in helping the community continues. The shop is still offering food pantry service and continuing their Christmas Angel program. It's a program that's exclusive to village residents.
This year the shop plans on helping 150 children this holiday season. Over the past month, village residents have been signing up to sponsor a child or a family. Barbara Ortman who's the shop's President of the Board of Directors said they need about 30 more sponsors to meet their goal.
"I've had some very interesting calls this weekend because of my Facebook page. I keep updating people and letting them know it really helps and the needy really need us this year. It means a lot to the families. For some, it's harder to sign up than others because it's hard to ask for help. I make them feel comfortable and say someday you may be able to pay it back," said Ortman.
Sponsored children will receive clothing and a toy this holiday season. Pick up is happening on December 10th. Ortman said even though you do have to sign up for the program, she said walk-ins will be accommodated while supplies last.
"I do get the last minute people that come in. And if they live in the village and they need help, I still help them even though it's after the time. I don't let anyone walk away without something," said Ortman.
If you're interested in donating or sponsoring a child, you're asked to call the Opportunity Shop at 315-697-3140. Donors are asked to buy new toys and clothing. Monetary donations are accepted as well.