Adopt-A-Family program assists local families in need

TOLEDO, Ohio (WTVG) - The holiday season is here, and for some families, it's a struggle to make sure their children have gifts to open, but there is help.

The United Way of Greater Toledo's Adopt-A-Family program has been lighting up lives during the holidays for more than 30 years.

Four years ago, Dominic Wahl and his family woke up to the unthinkable.

"One morning we woke up and had a tragic incident. My son, we had found him unresponsive, and it was a tragic moment for us, for me and my wife and for my family," Dominic said.

To grieve the loss of his son, Dominic took four months off work.

"I was off two months before the holiday season, so when December came up, I was already laid off," Dominic added.

Just as he was reeling about how he would provide Christmas for his five kids, the United Way stepped up to help.

"I wasn't aware there was any kind of assistance out there," Dominic said. "At the time, with my mind going with everything going on, it was like an angel was sent to me."

The United Way's Adopt-A-Family program put presents under the tree for Dominic's family: something he didn't think was possible.

"The impact on our family with the funeral costs and everything was astronomical, so to know that the United Way came in at that time, it was just a blessing, a true blessing," Dominic Said. "It was truly amazing, and to see the smiles on my children's faces, it was amazing."

The program is a financial assistance program for labor union workers and their families. It provides assistance year-round, but it's always busiest around the holidays.

Now that he's back on his feet, Dominic supports the United Way any chance he gets, and you can support it, too!

There's a fundraiser going on for the Adopt-A-Family program on Facebook. You can donate by getting connected to https://www.facebook.com/donate/1248849275256009/1292909870849949/.