How To Find Christmas Assistance Programs In Austin
In this article, you will find multiple organizations that offer Austin Christmas assistance programs.
Christmas is a difficult time of year for many people. If you are struggling to make it through the holiday season, this article will provide you with a complete list of Austin nonprofits offering Christmas help programs.
This guide contains everything you need to know about Austin County, Texas holiday assistance programs. Whether your goal is finding Christmas help in Austin or just learning about what services are available to those who live in the city of Austin, this guide will provide you with all the information you need.
What Is Are Christmas Assistance Programs?
A Christmas gift program provides free presents to low-income households during the Christmas season. Community organizations like nonprofits, social service agencies, and even your local church may provide you free Christmas presents during December.
Holiday Assistance Program Requirements
Each charity will have its standards for its Christmas program. That being said, your family’s overall household income must be less than certain levels. Furthermore, these are additional requirements that you may encounter:
- Individuals must show their photo identification and documentation of their total household income (most recent check stubs).
- All family members must have their Social Security cards. Additionally, proof of residency (utility/phone bill) is necessary.
- You must meet income requirements to receive free Christmas gifts. This often means falling under around 150% of the Federal Poverty Level.
Where Can You Get Free Christmas Presents In Austin? (Christmas Assistance Programs)
The easiest way to find free holiday gifts and Christmas assistance programs in Austin is by calling 211.
This is a 24-hour helpline that the United Way manages. No matter whether you are in Austin, Hockley, Huffman, or Hitchcock, if you dial 211 on your mobile phone, you will be connected to operators who can help you find Christmas assistance programs near your zip code.
How To Find Christmas Assistance Programs In Austin
In this section, you will find a list of organizations that offer Christmas assistance programs in the Austin area. Before telling you about the individual programs, here is a quick list of tips to give you the best chance of finding help during Christmas.
- Start Early – Start your search for Christmas gifts and assistance programs early. Many begin accepting applications in September/October.
- Apply With Multiple Programs – Apply with as many organizations as possible. Assistance isn’t guaranteed, so don’t just depend on one program.
- Turn To Facebook – Use social media to let others know about your specific needs during the holiday.
- Let People Know About Your Situation – Call your local church, friends, and family members to see if they know of any helpful resources. If you need help during Christmas, let others know.
Angel Tree: Free Toys For Children In Austin Texas During Christmas
This is a Christmas program that gives Christmas gifts to families in need. The Angel Tree program is managed by the Salvation Army. You will need to apply for this program by October 31st.
The way this holiday program works is trees are set up with tags that have children’s names and the Christmas gift that they want. People can then pick out a tag and buy a gift for that specific child or family.
To apply, simply visit the Austin Salvation Army’s Angel Tree assistance page to learn more about the Angel Tree program.
SAFE Holidays (Austin Christmas Assistance Program)
SAFE (Stop Abuse for Everyone) is an Austin nonprofit that helps survivors of domestic violence, child abuse, sexual assault, and exploitation.
SAFE Holidays is a program that offers free Christmas gifts in Austin, Texas to single mothers and other low-income families in Travis County. You will need to contact SAFE around October to learn more about their Christmas assistance program. If your family is selected to be adopted, SAFE will deliver gifts between December 12th and December 14th.
You can learn more about his Austin holiday assistance program by visiting the SAFE website or calling them at 512.267.7233.
Austin Police Department (Blue Santa Christmas Help Program)
Every holiday season, the Austin Police Department partners with Operation Blue Santa to provide low-income families with children 14 years and younger.
You must visit their website to apply online for the Austin Texas Blue Santa Program. Registration for this Austin holiday assistance program typically closes in mid-November.
To qualify, you must live inside Austin city limits. The Blue Santa Program does not assist Hays, Williamson, Bastrop, Pflugerville, Round Rock, Cedar Park, or Leander counties.
You can check your status or learn more about this holiday help program by calling the Austin Police Department at 512.974.5800 or visiting their Blue Santa Austin website.
Cedar Park Blue Santa Christmas Assistance Program
If you live in Cedar Park Texas you can contact the Cedar Park Police Department to learn about their Blue Santa Program. Registration for this program typically starts in November.
You can learn more by visiting the Cedar Park PD website or by calling them at 512.260.4646.
Georgetown Blue Santa Christmas Help Program
If you live in Georgetown, Texas, and would like your child to have a visit from Santa, you can sign up for the Blue Santa Program at the Georgetown Police Department. Registration usually starts in October.
For more information, please visit their website or call them at 512-930-3510.
Hutto Orange Santa Christmas Help Program
If you live in Hutto, Texas, and would like your child to have a visit from Santa, you can sign up for the Blue Santa Program at with Hutto High School. In addition to free toys, this program also offers a free Christmas dinner. Registration usually starts in October, so be sure to contact them early.
For more information, please visit the Hutto High School website or call them at 512.759.3771.
Pflugerville Christmas Assistance Program
If you live in Pflugerville, Texas, and would like your child to have a visit from Santa, you can sign up for the Blue Santa Program at the Pflugerville Police Department. This program offers free Christmas gifts in Pflugerville to low-income families with children 14 years and younger. Registration usually starts in October.
For more information, please visit the Pflugerville PD website or call them at 512.990.6940.
Round Rock Blue Santa Christmas Assistance Program
The Round Rock Police Department offers a Blue Santa Program that typically starts registration in early November. If you live in the Round Rock, Texas area, you can contact the police department to learn more about the program. This program helps low income families in Round Rock and senior citizens.
You can learn more by visiting the Round Rock PD website or by calling them at 512.844.8273.
More Blue Santa Programs (Travis County Christmas Assistance)
The city police department often hosts Blue Santa Programs. Below you will find a listing of Blue Santa Christmas help programs that the local police department offers to low-income families and senior citizens.
- Caldwell County Brown Santa -(512) 398-6747
- Elgin County Christmas Help – (512) 285-5757
- Hays County Blue Santa – (512) 393-7877 http://www.hccsaaa.org
- Hill Country Texas Christmas Assistance (Leander ISD boundaries) – (512) 773-5878
- Jonestown (city limits of Jonestown) – (512) 267-3245 Dental Grants in TexasDental Grants in Texas
- Leander Blue Santa Leander – (512) 528-2812
- Lago Vista Blue Santa (City Limits of Lago Vista) – (512) 633-0506
- Travis County Brown Santa (Condado Travis County) – (512) 247-2682
- Williamson County – 512-864-8215
University of Texas Orange Santa
The Orange Santa program provides UT staff, students, and faculty children in need with gifts during the holiday season. You will need to apply for this program as early as October.
Toys For Tots (Austin Texas)
This Austin holiday assistance program offers free toys for qualifying families. Registration for this program starts in October, and toys are distributed in December.
The children residing in low-income families within the counties of Burnet, LLano, Blanco, Hays, Travis, Williamson, Bastrop, and Caldwell are encouraged to apply for this Christmas program.
You can sign up for Toys for Tots in Austin on their website. Registration will close on December 5th of this year.
Society of St Vincent de Paul
This Christian assistance ministries program has a history of offering free toys in Austin, Texas to needy families. You can visit their website or call them at 512.251.6995 to learn about any holiday help programs they offer to families in Travis County.
How To Apply For Operation Santa
The United States Postal Service’s Operation Santa is a Christmas initiative that aims to help youngsters get the items on their wish lists.
To participate, you must:
- Write a letter with pens and paper detailing the toys, free clothing, or Christmas gifts your child would like.
- Mail your letter to the “North Pole”. You can find the complete address here on the USPS website.
To receive your gift from Operation Santa, you must send your letter postmarked by December 10th.
For more information, visit the USPS Operation Santa webpage.
Eventbrite (Austin Christmas Help Events)
Eventbrite is a website that lists local events in Austin. This website will show you where to find Austin toy drives and other Christmas giveaways.
In addition to finding programs that offer free gifts, you’ll also see listings of free Christmas events in Austin to which you can take your family and save money.
Austin Nonprofits Offering Christmas Help
Many nonprofits in Austin help low-income families with basic needs like rent and utilities. You can also contact these same nonprofits to see if they offer any holiday assistance programs for free toys or Christmas dinners.
We wrote an article about 13 nonprofits that offer rent assistance in Austin, Texas. You can use this same article to find the nonprofits that typically help with basic needs and call them to see if they have any Christmas giveaways this holiday season.
If you find yourself in need of assistance during the Christmas holidays, many Austin-based programs can help. You may be able to receive free Christmas toys, food baskets, or gift cards from these organizations. The key is to contact them as soon as registration opens, typically in September or October.
If you need more help this holiday season, please reach out to 211. May your family have a Merry Christmas and a prosperous New Year!!
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Nick Bryant is a Counselor with 11 years of experience working in community health. He enjoys concerts, walks with the doggo and wife, mocking Dallas Cowboy fans, and sharing community resources. Jump on the Houston Case Managers email list to receive weekly community resource guides delivered directly to your inbox.