The Morgan Jayne project is focused on bringing Christmas to children in the Roatan, although it looks like their original shipment will not be making its way to the island for the holiday.
inSide Drumheller brought readers the story of the most recent snag the Christmas Appeal ran into in its November 27 edition. At that time US Homeland Security turned back the shipment of items collected for the Annual Christmas Appeal. This was more than 3,000 pounds of gifts for children and their families in Honduras. The reasoning was that within these boxes there were items such as toothpaste that needed approval from the Food and Drug Administration before they entered the United States.
The project enlisted the help of a generous group of volunteers from a church in St. Mary’s Ontario. They went through each package and took out what they thought were the offending items.
When the repacked boxes made their way to the border, they were again turned away.
This time according to Fred Meacowecki it was because each box, even when being held in bond, which means it is not destined to stay on American soil, need to be itemized and a value give for each item, and a tariff number associated with each piece.
Makowecki said this is an impossibility as there are estimated 3,000 to 4,000 items in the shipments.
The other option is to send the items via Canada Post, however this is cost prohibitive.
“This shipment won’t make it this year for Christmas, it’s too late,” said Makowecki.
The Annual Christmas appeal distributes presents to the children and families that are served by Familias Saluables, the organization which administers the Morgan Jayne Project, and the users of the organ Jayne Infant Care Centre.
“The wish list goes far beyond the 100 people at the annual Christmas party,” says Makowecki.
The Christmas Appeal just doesn’t stop at the doors of the clinic. Volunteers distribute gifts to upwards of 300 more children living on remote islands only accessible by small boats, as well as children living in some of the poorest slums in the western hemisphere.
There is hope. While this shipment will not be proceeding, Makowecki has found a a way to make sure Christmas happens, however it is going to take a concerted effort.
He has hatched a plan that for this year he would like to assemble a cash donation to allow volunteers working in the Roatan to head to the mainland to buy the gifts to make Christmas come. He hopes to raise $4,000 to do this.
There is some cash already collected to support the Christmas Appeal, however he is unsure how much of it will be eaten up by shipping to bring the shipment back to Drumheller, to be sent out at a later date.
“Now we’re going to Facebook the heck out of it and spread the word,” he said.
It appears to be working. On Monday shortly before noon he made a post, “We are going to make this work. To get all the boxes back, then out will preclude us from a Christmas delivery. So the plan is to raise $4,000 by the end of the week, send it to the island where they will go to the mainland and buy 400 presents. Our boxes here will be sent out over the next few months as we raise funds. Please help...we can make this happen.”
By day’s end almost $400 had been pledged by supporters.
To make a donation to help make Christmas happen for children in Roatan affected by AIDS, donation can be mailed or dropped off at Image Crafter in Drumheller addressed to The Morgan Jayne Project c/o Fred Makowecki, Box 2498, Drumheller Alberta T0J0Y0. He asks that donations have an address attached to send the tax receipt.