Gravitate Donation Tree

Help families in need this holiday.

Gravitate is going all in to help families this holiday, and we need your help.
Our member Derek Brooks and his wife Kari, have connected us with three local families to learn what could make their holidays extra special. We've setup a Christmas tree at each Gravitate location where you can drop off (or order) presents to be given to the families detailed below.

Family #1

We asked the families to share two “wants” and one “need” for each individual.
Tiffany & Demorroe (parents) did not ask for anything for themselves but Tiffany mentioned that they could use help with their MidAmerican bill (reach out to Abby for details). Two of the four children have birthdays in December, so in addition to Christmas, it makes this month a little tight. Delilah is 2 ½ years old and loves babies and playing in the kitchen. Junior is 11 years old  and enjoys sports, especially basketball. DaMya is 13 years old and likes art projects, drawing, hair accessories and emojis. Dalexia is 16 years old and her mom describes her as “very girly and loves anything pink and sparkly”.

Family #2

Cheryl is a single mom to Brendan, an 8 year old boy. They are living in a hotel at this time. Cheryl described Brendan as a "busy boy who loves activity toys"—he loves Minecraft, legos and remote control cars. Cheryl is interested in cross stitch and anything with wolves or Indians!

Family #3

Hussen and Kashindi and their six children are new to Des Moines. They are from the Congo and have been in the country less than a year. They currently live friends in an apartment with a total of 17 people. They are very interested in being involved with the community, but are still learning customs and communicating in English. Jenne is 2 years old and likes dolls and blocks. Rehema is a kindergarten student at and enjoys barbies, stuffed animals and Cinderella. Hussein is in 2nd grade and he loves school, and likes to teach his family English. He was excited that gifts meant something that he (and his family) would get to keep! Hussein is interested in legos, games, spiderman and basketball. But, one thing he is really interested in is having Christmas tree at their house. Chausiku is a 5th grade student and is interested in make up, volleyball and having her own purse! Tamari Amani attends Middle School and she would like clothes and shoes. Nyota Kakozi is a 16 year old and is she is also interested in clothes and shoes!

How can I help?

Help us surprise these families by buying
a few gifts (or giftcards)!

Find the list of gift ideas at

Love Amazon?
Order gifts straight to Gravitate via the Amazon wish list! Each item displays a 'Top Search Results' button that will search the items on Amazon. It will auto-include the Gravitate Shipping address!

Like to shop?
Pick up items during your holiday shopping and drop them off at either Gravitate location under the Christmas tree! Be sure to let Abby or Kyle know *who* you purchased gifts for so we can keep the wish list updated!

Want to give cash?
We get it—holiday shopping is crazy enough! Send funds to Derek Broox via Paypal with the message "Gravitate Donation Tree" and the family/member you would like to buy a gift for (if you have a preference). You can also drop off cash to Abby or Kyle at either Gravitate location! 

Can I donate previously owned items?
We do ask that all the gifts donated are *new*.

What about books?
All three families requested books, so we are also accepting donated books. Feel free to bring your previously owned (in fair condition) books for all ages!

When is the deadline?
We will be hosting a Gangsta' Rap Wrapping Party where we will sort and wrap the gifts for each family on Wednesday, December 20th—so drop off your donated gifts before 4pm that day! (Derek will be providing the playlist for this event.)

I have more questions.
Reach out to Gravitate Downtown's Community Manager, Abby,