Project HELP gearing up for the holidays


Project HELP, 195 E. Superstition Blvd. in Apache Junction --- in the Pinal County complex --- is accepting holiday donations 8:30 a.m.-noon Mondays and Wednesdays.

Thanksgiving donations will be accepted through Nov. 22 and Christmas donations will be accepted now through Dec. 6, according to a release. 

Those who need to donate at other times or days can contact Rosie Portugal Brastad, Project HELP coordinator, at 480-288-2955.

Individuals and/or groups with large quantities of donations are asked to call ahead of time so Project HELP can prepare space and make arrangements to receive the items. 

“While we do accept gently-used items at other times, we only give new items to our families for Christmas,” Mrs. Brastad said in the release. “We appreciate the support of local businesses, churches and individuals who help provide for our Project HELP families.” 

Project HELP is 100% supported by donations: financial, food, new and gently-used clothing, and household goods provided by churches, organizations, businesses, and individuals. Aid is distributed, as funds allow, based on need, as determined by the Project HELP coordinator. 

Project HELP encourages families to become self-sufficient, in part by treating aid as a loan. Families will repay these loans through service to their community. Families are responsible for finding their own community service and bringing in written documentation of their volunteer hours. It is strongly suggested that parents volunteer at their child’s school if possible. 

Project HELP also serves as a resource for other services available to families within our community and will make referrals whenever possible and appropriate. 

For more information about Project Help, go to on the Apache Junction Unified School District website or call Mrs.  Brastad at 480-288-2955. 

Needing help?

Families needing assistance to provide a Thanksgiving meal for their families can submit applications 8:30-11 a.m. now to Nov. 14 to Project HELP, 195 E. Superstition Blvd. in Apache Junction. Applications for Christmas assistance will be accepted now through Nov. 26. 

To be eligible for aid, students and families must meet the following criteria: 

  • The parent or legal guardian of the student must apply in-person at the Project Help office. 
  • The family must have children who have been enrolled and regularly attending an Apache Junction Unified School District for at least two weeks.   
  • ALL school-age children living in the household must attend an AJUSD school. Aid will be contingent on continued, regular attendance at the school. 
  • The family must live within the boundaries of AJUSD. 
  • Written documentation of all income and all expenses must be provided.