EAU CLAIRE Wisc. (WLAX/WEUX) – The Boys and Girls Club in Eau Claire is helping families celebrate this holiday season. Several initiatives at the Lee and Mary Markquart Center are coming together this week. With more than 10-thousand dollars in cash donations and items from dozens of individuals and organizations. Today, the annual holiday giveaway kicked off.

The club’s gym was lined with tables filled with over 500 donated items, so club kids could “shop” for their families. Mary Steinke, who volunteers with the club, says the kids get “really excited.”   

“It’s really heartwarming to watch them shop for, basically they don’t seem to think about themselves, it’s the other, it’s the other people they’re thinking about and I think that the boys and girls club has a lot to do with making them think that way,” said Steinke.

Also happening this week is the annual holiday shopping spree. Through the project, 20 club kids will be suited up with new winter gear. This year, 21 families are connected with local donors to provide them with gifts and even holiday dinner help.