The Holiday Gift Program is City Youth Now's oldest program. Since 1955, we have provided thousands of holiday gifts to abused, neglected, and troubled children in the San Francisco Juvenile Court System. Originally, the program provided gifts to youth lodged and forgotten at the Youth Guidance Center while waiting for a new foster care placement. Since then, the program has expanded exponentially and focused on youth between ages 10 to 18 in response to the growth and needs of the Juvenile Court System.
While there are several well-known Bay Area and national programs that provide holiday gifts for foster youth, they provide only for the youngest children in the system, with few remembering young people in the system once they reach the age of about 10. We think every child deserves a holiday gift, so together we make sure that no child is forgotten! More times than not, the holiday gift provided by City Youth Now is the only gift the youth receives over the holiday season.
Every year in late August and early September, the City Youth Now holiday elves formerly orchestrated by beloved board president Anne DeVincenzi Dito and former board member Kathleen Ryan get to work purchasing gifts for youth in the foster care and probation systems. Youth advocates are sent a catalogue of the gifts in October and send in their orders through December. In the fall volunteers wrap and distribute the gifts to youth in the system. The gifts vary from year to year, and we always rely on a group of young people in the system to help us provide the most appropriate gifts for these youth. Learn more about the gifts provided to youth in the system.
Organize a team of volunteers to wrap holiday gifts for a day.
About Anne DeVincenzi Dito
City Youth Now has established the Holiday Gift Fund in loving memory of Anne DeVincenzi Dito. Anne was a former president of the board of directors, a lifetime supporter of the organization with a special fondness for the Holiday Gift Program, and a beloved friend who inspired everyone on the Board with her thoughtfulness, warmth and extraordinary devotion to the youth we serve. For many years, Anne co-chaired the Holiday Gift program with her dear friend Kathleen Ryan and beloved husband, Arnold Dito. The dynamic trio purchased, wrapped, and distributed holiday gifts every year to San Francisco's neediest children. The Anne DeVincenzi Dito Holiday Gift Fund has been established in her honor to continue City Youth Now's time honored tradition of giving holiday gifts to the children of San Francisco.