Cassopolis resident starts Facebook group to make Christmas dreams come true

Published 8:14 am Saturday, December 5, 2020

CASSOPOLIS — For years, Cassopolis resident Felicia Albert has dreamed of being able to give back to her community during the holidays.

This year, she is doing just that while also inviting the community to help give their neighbors the best Christmas possible.

Earlier this week, Albert started a Facebook group called The Wishing Tree. In the group, members can ask for assistance with basic needs, Christmas presents and more. Then, other group members will respond, pulling together common resources to make those Christmas wishes come true. Since starting up this week, the group has already amassed more than 100 members and fulfilled a handful of Christmas wishes.

“This is something I’ve dreamed of for a long time,” Albert said. “I just wanted to do something to give back. It’s been a tough year, even in my house, so I just wanted to do something to make people’s Christmases brighter.”

Albert said she got the idea to start the Facebook group after watching the Hallmark Christmas movie, “The Angel Tree.” The film’s plot revolves around a writer seeking the identity of a person who grants wishes placed upon an “angel tree.”

Watching the film made Albert realize she could do something similar in Cassopolis if she harnessed the power of the community. She turned to a Facebook group to reach a wider audience.

“Cass is just the perfect place for this,” Albert said. “The village always seems to pull together. There is a lot of love in Cass. I love the small-town feel you get here. … The community is very giving.”

There have been times in Albert’s life when she has needed assistance around the holidays. Now that she is in a place to give back and help others during the Christmas season, she said she is excited to put her full efforts into bringing the community together through The Wishing Tree.

“It’s just amazing. It feels great to give back,” Albert said. “It’s a wonderful thing to help somebody else out.”

Albert plans to keep the Facebook page open until Christmas to meet as many requested needs as possible before the holiday. After that, she hopes to make The Wishing Tree an annual tradition in the Cassopolis community.

“So far, it’s going really well. I’m excited about it,” she said. “We would like to do this every Christmas if we can. It’s been a really hard year for all of us, so I think this is a great way to end the year with a bright spot.”

For more information or to participate, visit The Wishing Tree on Facebook.