2022 Gingerbread Express is Ready to Roll!

Gingerbread Express

There is no better way to do that than by sponsoring a child in need for the holidays through the Gingerbread Express. It's easy, and fun, and will absolutely put you in the holiday spirit!

The Gingerbread Express

Through your generosity, the NEARI Children's Fund does more than provide necessities for our neediest students on a day-to-day basis. It spreads holiday magic in the form of giant gift bags and boxes, each designed to make the happiest of holidays come true.

For more than 30 years, the Children's Fund Gingerbread Express has provided members and friends a way to ensure that no student feels the stigma of a bleak, gift-less holiday season.

Coordinator Val Staples works with teachers and other school personnel to develop a list of students whose families need assistance. Each of the students designs a gingerbread cookie cutout listing information about his/her clothing needs and gift wishes. The cutouts are then distributed anonymously to donors willing to fill the requests.

Overall, this program has embraced thousands of needy children. In many instances, the gifts from the Gingerbread Express have been the only gifts the child has received. What a great way to feel the magic of the season!

Donor sign-up begins every fall, and wrapped gifts are delivered to NEARI by early December. Email vstaples@neari.org to volunteer to be a donor or to nominate a child (members only). Please help us give our needy students a holiday they will always remember.

How it Works

What Should I Buy?

What Else Should I Know?

A Member Says "Thank You"

Children's Fund Coordinator Val Staples recently received this letter from a member in Scituate:

Hello Valerie!

I would like to receive a gingerbread for a child! If you could please guide me in the process I would greatly appreciate it. This will be my first time donating, but I am not new to the Gingerbread Express.

I grew up in Olneyville and attended William D'Abate Elementary school. I can not tell you enough how much the Gingerbread Express truly made a difference in my childhood. I am a child of immigrants and an immigrant myself, so we did not have many family or friends living in the country, let alone the state. My favorite childhood memories of Christmas came from the Gingerbread Express.

I was also wondering if there is any way to volunteer the day of, handing out gifts? Or even in the days prior to the gift giving. I can provide a background check, or anything needed if the opportunity arises.

Several NEARI locals have organized their own gift-giving programs for the students within their home district.

Ask your local president or building representative if there is one in your school or district.