Episode 85 – Michelle Mangum, Clandestine Kringle
Michele Mangum serves as Elf Major for Clandestine Kringle. 5 years ago a local community member decided that he wanted to make a difference for a few families in need. He had no idea that it would grow to be what it is today, serving over 100 families across East Idaho.
Clandestine Kringle can be found on Facebook. The page is where families in need ask for help and the group is where individuals wanting to help can adopt other families.
Each family asking for help is visited by Elves First Class who collect reasonable needs and wants of the family. If the families are being assisted by any other agency, Clandestine Kringle steps out. They are very clear that they only assist those who have no other resources or who have been helped before. The idea behind Clandestine Kringle is to get families who may be down on their luck through Christmas with the idea that they won't need the help again.
Each child also receives a fleece blanket that is made by volunteers as well as a book paid for by book fair funds raised in conjunction with Barnes and Noble.
“Even if you can't adopt a family we encourage you to get involved. We have caroling nights. Just come out and carol,” Michele says, “It inspires a lot of that Christmas magic.”
Clandestine Kringle coordinates with many area agencies. One of those includes the Domestic Violence and Sexual Assult Center where donations to Clandestine Kringle can be made. This is a tax-deductable donation.
Businesses also have opportunities to adopt, especially the larger families that would be difficult for a single family to adopt. This year Michele is encouraging businesses to challenge other businesses to create a little competition.
Michele said they are seeing an interesting trend this year where there aren't as many families who have applied. She feels that this may be due to the additional assistance provided by governmental agencies as a result of COVID-19. The hard cut-off for applications is usually December 1st but they have allowed some late applications this year.
“He (Clandestine Kringle) has the most sincere, loving heart ever. That's what got me, the sincere need,” Michele said. As Elves you get to see these families and you get to deliver the gifts. “The kids are so excited. The tears flow. There's this renewed joy.”
“We need wrappers, singers, food donations. There are so many ways you can be involved without a financial investment,” Michele said.
If you are interested in being an Elf First Class, reach out to Kringle on his page and let him know.
To be considered for adoption reach out to Kringle on his page at https://www.facebook.com/people/Clandestine-Kringle/100010619987731.If you would like to adopt a family, join the Clandestine Kringle Group at https://www.facebook.com/people/Clandestine-Kringle/100010619987731.
Visit the DVASC website to donate at https://www.dvsacac.org/clandestine-kringle.
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