This December, Big Brothers Big Sisters of Fond du Lac County is thanking all the individuals, volunteers, and companies who spread holiday cheer and share the spirit of the season with Littles and their families through the Adopt-a-Family program. Adopt-a-Family is a holiday assistance program that helps put gifts under the trees of hundreds of local children each year. This year, adopters helped make the holiday a little brighter for 103 families!

Program Director Jennifer Smith has coordinated Adopt-a-Family at BBBS for 16 years. Every holiday season, you’ll find Smith contacting donors, facilitating drop offs, and making sure all family’s gifts are under the tree by Christmas day.

“The best part is being able to see how much the community comes together to help these children,” said Smith. “We’re able to send a child back to school to talk about how great their Christmas was. For some of our kids, that wouldn’t be the case without this program.”

While families must have at least one child enrolled at BBBS to benefit from the Adopt-a-Family program, every child in the family receives gifts. Our adopters donate and wrap gifts ranging from toys, clothes, food, cleaning supplies, college necessities, technology, and even furniture based on the needs, wants, and interests of each child and their family. Smith collaborates with other local holiday assistance programs such as the Boys and Girls Club, the Department of Social Services, and the Salvation Army to make sure every family is covered by one organization.

Adopt-a-Family donors can be individuals, families, service organizations, local businesses, or large companies looking to make a difference in the community. This year, donors adopted anywhere from one to 27 families at a time, holding wrapping parties and organizing team drop offs to spread holiday cheer at the BBBS office.

“I was feeling a bit Grinchy this year and then our Adopt-a-Family program kicked in,” said BBBS Executive Director Tammy Young. “From the pride and joy that our adopters showed when dropping off gifts to seeing how happy our families were when they picked them up, my holiday season was made. So many children received Christmas this year because of the generosity of the Fond du Lac community.”

Thank you to the 2023 Adopt-a-Family donors: Alpha Delta Kappa, Al and Amy Ries, Angela C. Moser, Angie Peterson, Ann Frintner, Bardwin Construction LLC, C.D. Smith Construction, Carly Salter, Debra Schabel, Dempsey Law Firm, Edward and Judith Foy, Equix Inc., Excel Engineering, Fahser Family, Faith Lutheran School, Fond du Lac Area Insurance Association, Fondy Vintage Auto Club, Goodman Family, Grande Cheese Company (F&A, R&B, BT, CIG, FSBU, HR, MMSC, QA, and Quality Lab), Hansen Family, Hennes Family, Integrity Saw & Tool Inc, John and Katie Mauthe, Josh and Amy Ziebert, Kaufman Family, Kiwanis, Lacey Wendorff, Loescher/Anderson Family, Lowe Family, M3 Insurance, Mand Family, Mercury Marine, Moose Lodge, Moraine Park Technical College, Pronique, Renee Breister, Ron and Ann May, Ryan Kamphuis, Sabel Mechanical, Salter Family, Schuchardt Family, Scott Family, Service League of Fond du Lac, Society Insurance, Trinity Church, U.S. Bank, Van Horn Hyundai, Verdin Family, Weyer Family, Zach Weibye, and Zacherl O’Malley. Special thanks to volunteers from SSM Health for wrapping additional gifts.

Big Brothers Big Sisters of Fond du Lac County is a United Way Agency that assists children with social, emotional and character development through one-to-one mentoring relationships with caring adults. The agency matches children with a Big Brother, Sister, Couple or Family in a community or school-based program. Children aged 6 through 13 can enroll in the program through parent or guardian referral. For more information about the program or to volunteer, call 920-922-8200 or visit