HUTCHINSON, Kan. (KSNW) – A Hutchinson boutique has gathered Christmas gifts for more than 100 foster children in Reno County.
“I just feel like they didn’t choose the path that they are on and if the community can help just by giving them some extra presents for Christmas, it might make their day better,” said Lucille’s Boutique Owner Morgan Gibson.
Morgan Gibson cannot have children of her own. She said she hopes to one day become a foster mom or adoptive parent.
“It would mean the world to be able to raise a child that was maybe a little bit less fortunate in the start of their life,” she said.
Gibson’s love for children led her to create a giving tree inside her boutique. Similar to an angel tree, the giving tree has ornaments with the gender, age and gift ideas for the child in need.
“We have all ages from newborn to there are some 18 year olds,” she explained.
Foster mom Amy Johnson said the giving tree is a blessing for the children and their foster families.
“To have a community come in and support you, ah, it’s amazing,” Johnson said.
Johnson and her husband have fostered 30 children since they became licensed about three and a half years ago.
“It is the most rewarding, but difficult thing we have ever done. I wouldn’t change a thing. I have loved every moment of it,” she said.
One of Johnson’s foster children came into her care two days before Christmas.
“I was like, ‘Yeah, absolutely, we will take her,’ but then I thought, ‘oh no, tomorrow is Christmas Eve. We are traveling, when are we going to get presents?’ Johnson explained.
Thanks to kind community members like Gibson, who works with Saint Francis Ministries, Johnson and her husband did not have to worry about going out and buying gifts.
“She came to us and she came with two bags full of presents and all I had to do was wrap them and take them the next day with us and so that was so helpful,” Johnson said.
Gibson started her giving tree in 2018. She collected 50 gifts for foster children that year.
In 2019, she collected 127 gifts for foster kids. She said her reach has grown thanks to the generosity of the people in Hutchinson.
“Sometimes I get really teary-eyed just looking at the tree and how much the community has helped,” Gibson said.