The Coins for Kids program at KONY Radio, which would become one of the most successful and long lasting fundraising events in St. George history, began in 1990 when station staff were made aware of a family with four children holed up in a local motel with no hope for Christmas. From its beginning, Coins for Kids has, in its 27-year history given the magic of Christmas to many thousands of children affected by unemployment, medical issues, divorce and other life-changing situations.
Coins for Kids officially became a 501(c)(3) non-profit organization in 1996 and in its most dramatic year – 2008 when the U. S. economy tanked – provided happy holiday memories to 2083 children in 765 families.
An efficient central registration center, requiting a letter of recommendation from a school counselor or a clergyman as well as a certified copy of the child’s birth certificate, opens on the first Monday after Thanksgiving. Coins for Kids, and their other community non-profit partners, work together to be certain children in need have a happy holiday despite their current circumstances.
The all-volunteer organization has an annual goal to raise at least $125,000 each year in large and small donations from individuals, families, businesses, service clubs and churches. Then on a Tuesday in mid-December, 500-600 people show up to shop at the Bloomington Walmart store. On the following Wednesday, many hundreds more will gather at the Dixie Convention Center to sort and wrap the gifts … and on Thursday, even more volunteers – many dressed as one of 125 Santas – deliver the gifts to grateful parents and excited childen.
“After all these years, we have our process down to a fine science,” says Carl Lamar, radio personality and the heart and soul of the Coins for Kids program, which “gives everyone an opportunity to participate. It’s all about service!”
If you are planning a winter vacation in Southern Utah, we invite you to come join in the fun of creating the magic of Christmas for children in our community while enjoying our beautiful, affordable home-away-from-home vacation resort rentals. Register online today at www.stgeorgeresortrentals.com for accommodations at the St. George Resort Rentals or www.laspalmasresortcondos.com for Five Seasons Vacation condominiums. You’ll find comfortable living spaces, fully stocked kitchens with all appliances; free-use laundry sets in every unit; and resort amenities. Your keys will be waiting!