Make this Season Special for a Family in Need

What is Adopt-A-Family?

Adopt-A-Family is a signature event and tradition at the George Washington University where members of the GW community (students, faculty, staff, and alumni) “adopt” families in Washington, DC and provide holiday gifts. Each individual adopted receives a minimum of 3 holiday gifts—a clothing item, an educational or household item, and a toy or “fun” gift. In total, we ask that donors spend a minimum of $60 ($20 per item) per individual.

Families are identified by the Nashman Center’s community partners. This year we are partnering with DC General Family Shelter, CentroNia, DCPS, Academy of Hope, Housing Up, and Latin American Youth Center. 

Over 170 GW community members adopted 173 families and 475 individuals in 2015. Check out the GW Today story.

Who Can Adopt?

Anyone! GW Departments, Greek Chapters, Student Organizations, Sports Teams, Individuals, and More!

How Can I Adopt?

Visit to register! Registration closes on November 18th. 

How it Works

Participating individuals and teams spend $60 on each individual of a family. 
You, your peers in a student organization, or coworkers in your office, are expected to give three gifts to each individual you adopt:  

  • one clothing gift
  • one fun or recreational gift
  • one housing gift (for adults) or educational gift (for children)

Families are identified by DC agencies and Community Partners, including Academy of Hope, Big Brothers Big Sisters, CentroNia, the Latin American Youth Center, the Transitional Housing Corporation, and S.T.A.R.S. Mentoring Organization.

Traditionally student organizations, teams, and offices have adopted a family collectively.  By sharing the costs equitably among members, it becomes much more affordable to spread extra holiday cheer to community members in need.


When and Where Do I Drop Off Gifts?

Gifts should be dropped off in a labeled holiday gift bag on Tuesday, December 6th from 8am to 12pm at the Marvin Center Grand Ballroom (800 21st Street NW, 3rd Floor) or at Research Place on the Virginia Science and Technology Campus. Gift Drop-Off this year will feature student performance groups! Schedule coming soon!

Questions? Email or call the Honey W. Nashman Center for Civic Engagement and Public Service at 202-994-9900.

GW Adopt-A-Family