Where to Donate and Give In Orange County During the Holidays| Orange County Charities

So many of our families are looking for great Orange County Charities to help serve during the holiday season and year round. Here are a list of some amazing local Orange County organizations who support local kids and families. We know you will love them just as much as we do!

Project Hope Alliance

Mission: To End Orange County Homelessness

What They Need

Feeding Families

Volunteers will assist Project Hope Alliance staff in spreading Holiday cheer by distributing nonperishable Thanksgiving foods to the families we serve. Volunteers will assist clients in “shopping” in our food pantry. This is a great way to serve and practice hospitality with our families!


Deck the Halls for Hope

Come with cheerful spirits and help transform our offices into a winter wonderland! Making our offices festive is the first step to providing the kids we serve with a magical holiday season.


Wrapping Parties

Every Holiday season, our community members donate hundreds of gifts through Project Hope Alliance’s “adopt-a-child” program. We need your help to wrap all of these gifts! 


Feeding Families

Volunteers will assist Project Hope Alliance staff in spreading Holiday cheer by distributing nonperishable Holiday foods to the families we serve. In 2013, over 600 bags of food were distributed in the week before Christmas alone! Volunteers will assist clients in “shopping” in our food pantry as well as distributing gifts. This is a great way to serve and practice hospitality with our families! We need two to four volunteers on hand during each “shift.”


Mission: To Provide a Home to Orange County Teens in Crisis

What They Need

Ongoing household needs include: twin sized sheet sets, towel sets, toiletries for girls, grocery store and department store gift cards, clothing store gift cards, restaurant gift cards, white copy paper, backpacks for school. 
Holiday specific requests: Gift cards, hair products and accessories, make-up, jewelry and accessories, pajamas, robes and slippers. 
Additionally, assistance in meal preparation is needed. 

Mission: Breaking the Cycle of Child Abuse

What They Need

Families Helping Families Holiday Program. The Child Abuse Prevention Center offers community members a chance to adopt and help other local families, sign up to be an elf and/or a reindeer for gift giving and delivery.

CHOC Glass Slipper Guild

 CHOC Children’s is the only private, not-for-profit hospital in Orange County devoted exclusively to the health and well being of children, regardless of their family’s ability to pay. Affiliated with the University of Irvine, CHOC is the fastest growing children’s hospital in California. CHOC clinicians, nurses, and staff are relentless in their pursuit to heal and find cures for children.

The Glass Slipper Guild is one of 13 guilds that support CHOC Children’s. The guild was established in 1994 after 10 years as the Cinderella Guild Juniors. While our name has changed over the years, our purpose has remained constant: To acquaint the community with the mission and needs of CHOC Children’s and to support the Hospital through service and fundraising. We are a dedicated and passionate group of volunteers that has raised almost $3.5 million since 1983.

Ways to Help

Visit CHOC Glass Slipper Guild for more information and ways to get involved


Jessie Rees Foundation- Irvine, CA

The Jessie Rees Foundation is a courageous children’s support network that provides reactive encouragement, resources and support to kids fighting other life threatening disease like: Cystic Fibrosis & Congenital Heart Disease. The Jessie Rees Foundation is inspired by 12 year old Jessie Rees. Jessie was a beautiful, athletic, smart and compassionate girl who fought two brain tumors (DIPG) for ten months and two days. On January 5, 2012 Jessie earned her angel wings.

Ways to Help

*Donate to Jessie's JoyJars which are delivered to kids fighting cancer and other life threatening illnesses 

*Collect hospital approved toys for JoyJars

*host a holiday workplace JoyDrive to collect hospital-approved toys



Kristie's Foundation for Critically Ill Children, Anaheim, CA

Kristie’s Foundation is a non-profit 501(c)(3) organization that is dedicated to providing support, assistance and cherished moments to critically ill children and their families. Kristie’s focus is on end-of-life care for children and support for the family that loves them.

Ways to Help

* Participate in the Kristie's Foundation Adopt a Family Program for Thanksgiving and Christmas

*Donate to Kristie's Foundation. 100% of their monthly giving donations will be used for the Comfort Care Program for dying children and their families

The McKenna Claire Foundation

The mission of the McKenna Claire Foundation is to Cure pediatric brain cancer by raising awareness, increasing community involvement and funding research


Miracles for Kids- Tustin, CA

Miracles for Kids is a non-profit organization based in Orange County, California. Our mission is to improve the lives of children with cancer and other life-threatening illnesses.The Miracles for Kids Grant Program, which has been operating exclusively at Children’s Hospital of Orange County since March 2006, provides aid to patients and their families who are in a financial crisis as a result of their child’s treatment for a life-threatening illness. The Fund-a-Family Program is a donor-to-family matching program, providing you with the ability to support one child and their family on a continual basis. The Basket of Miracles Programsupports our Miracles for Kids Grant Program recipients and their families by delivering fresh produce, fruits, vegetables, canned goods, and seasonal gifts to their homes throughout the year. The Basket of Miracles Program operates during the three primary holiday seasons each year – April, November, and December – as well as during the beginning of the school year in August. 

Ways to Help

*Volunteer or Donate to the Thanksgiving Baskets of Miracles

Contribute or volunteer for the Holiday Baskets of Miracles

Other Ways to Volunteer


Pediatric Cancer Research Foundation

Inspired by the ground-breaking research of Dr. Mitchell Cairo the Foundation quickly grew beyond its Orange County roots.  Since 1982, we’ve raised over $30 million for cutting edge pediatric cancer research.  This research has led to continuing improvements in the care, quality of life and survival rates of children with malignant diseases.  We invite you to read about some of these important discoveries. Despite significant advancements over the past 30 years, cancer still claims more children’s lives than asthma, diabetes, cystic fibrosis and AIDS combined. We’re diligent in our quest to give every child a cancer-free future, which is why PCRF has awarded more than $30 million in research grants.

Ways to Help

visit the Pediatric Cancer Research Foundation online to learn more

OrangeWood Children's Foundation

The mission of Orangewood Children's Foundation is to provide life-changing prevention and intervention programs for abused and neglected children, young adults and at risk families through one-on-one support and community partnerships to end the cycle of child abuse.

Ways to help

*donate items from their holiday wish list (personal items, baby items, toys, games, gift cards and more)

*volunteer to help prepare lunches

*Participate in the share our wine fundraiser

*Volunteer at Santa's Workshop

*Volunteer at the Youth Holiday Party

*Mentor a foster youth

Women Helping Women

The mission of WHW is to provide comprehensive employment support services to empower disadvantaged men, women and teens to achieve economic self sufficiency through employment success. WHW believes that all men, women and teens, with the right kinds of support and education, can become economically self sufficient for a lifetime, and set a wonderful example for future generations by breaking the cycle of poverty.


Mary's Kitchen- Orange, CA

We are an all volunteer organization that provides food and services to homeless in Orange County. Founded by 82 year old Mary McAnena in 1984, Mary's kitchen is 100% run by volunteers and private donors. grocery stores, restaurants and other businesses. On average, 100 people come to Mary's kitchen per day for breakfast, a hot meal, hot showers and clean clothes.

Ways to help

*volunteer help serve meals **be sure to call at 8:00am before your planned visit to ensure help is needed that day.

* Donate items needed: new socks, new underwear, backpacks, shoes, razors, cleaning supplies, toiletries (travel size)

* Donate funds to Mary's Kitchen


Orange County Rescue Mission (Village of Hope)-Tustin, CA

The Village of Hope, a 192-bed transitional housing program for homeless men, women and children, opened in March 2008 with the arrival of 30 men from the Rescue Mission’s shelter in Santa Ana. The Children’s Dream Center, a 6,000 square foot center located on the Village campus, was completed three months later in July and the Rescue Mission began admitting single homeless women with children and intact families. Village of Hope provides spiritual and personal development, case management and counseling services, medical and dental care, workforce development and computer training, food service and dining, transportation services and more.

The Friendly Center- Orange, CA

Friendly Center offers more than 20 free programs and services to low-income families, providing assistance to more than 4,000 individuals every year. A wide variety of programs are designed to assist families overcome many of the barriers they face. Emergency services help families overcome short term crisis. Supplemental food programs prevent hunger. Educational and enrichment programs provide academic assistance for children and adults. Programs are provided by Friendly Center Staff, Collaborative Partners, Volunteers and Federal Work-Study Students.

 Ways to Help

* Host an online toy drive

* Host a food drive

* Adopt a Family

* Attend the Holiday Toy Collection Party

* Volunteer for Holiday Outreach

* Donate to the Friendly Center



OC Walk to Remember-Costa Mesa, CA

OC Walk to Remember supports 27 hospitals, support groups and other organizations helping families who have lost a baby in pregnancy or infancy. They include: Nine Orange County groups that help those grieving the loss of a baby; Twelve local hospitals; St. Joseph Comfort Care Program; both Orange County Threads of Love chapters, A Heart to Hold; Now I Lay Me Down to Sleep; and Share Pregnancy & Infant Loss and Support, Inc. The OC Walk to Remember takes place in Orange County, California, in October, which is Pregnancy and Infant Loss Awareness month.  We encourage parents to invite their loved ones and friends to join them as they walk in remembrance of their child or children. The walk is preceded by a memorial service, where each baby’s name is read.

Ways to Help

* Donate to OC Walk to Remember.  Your donation, regardless of size, will have an immediate impact on the OC Walk to Remember and the organizations we benefit.


Families Forward- Irvine, CA

Families Forward assists families in financial crisis to achieve and maintain self-sufficiency. We do not just provide support; we supply the tools for families to once again become independent, productive residents of the community.With your help, we can continue to ensure that families in Orange County go to bed safe, happy, and healthy, with a sense of stability and hope for the future.

Ways to Help

* Become a Thanksgiving Program Donor

* Adopt a Family for the Holidays

* Volunteer for the Holidays


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