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Spreading Holiday Cheer

By Gigi Carroll, SVP, Creative Strategist, Chicago

Every holiday season Draftfcb Chicago partners with the Off The Street Club (OTSC), an organization dedicated to keeping Chicago’s youth off the streets, to support bring a little holiday cheer to the kids. 
During this time, the Chicago office receives dozens of "Letters to Santa" and Christmas lists from the children of OTSC and each year I gladly buy the gifts on the list, drop them into a box, and walk away satisfied that I have done my part to maintain the “true spirit” of the holidays. This year I was moved to do something extra and spoke with event organizers to see how else I could participate.

I was invited to attend the annual OTSC holiday luncheon brings together agency staff and OTSC kids for an afternoon of food and arts and crafts. The luncheon also recognizes one outstanding boy and girl who have performed exceptionally in OTSC activities. I was thoroughly moved and motivated by kids who shared their personal stories of triumph and adversity with the attendees.

Beyond the appreciation of the kids, what has surprised me the most is the spirit of our agency. The devoted staff who ceaselessly ask what more they can do.
This holiday luncheon was a great way for me to get involved in the agency's civic spirit. If you are in the Chicago areas, there is still time for you to help the kids of the OTSC:
Be an elf. Grab a “Letter to Santa” for the chance to fulfill a gift wish.
Send a Candy-Gram. Send a holiday candy cane and greeting to a colleague for a small donation.
Toss that loose change. To collect smaller donations, loose change buckets are placed throughout the office.
Attend a party! On Wednesday, December 18 we will host a party to distribute all the donated gifts to the kids. Everyone is encouraged to attend.
Donations of toys, cash, and loose change will still be accepted through Wednesday via Patti Johnson. And while you are speaking with Patti, sign-up to volunteer with organizing efforts in 2014!

Thank you for making this holiday something to truly celebrate.

Happy holidays!