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The Houston Chapter is where it all began! 

In Houston, Texas in 1999, mother and daughter, Gayla and Donya Gardner, asked friends to join them in sharing their blessings. At their usual holiday parties, these twelve individuals asked guests to bring an item to donate, in the spirit of Christmas, to those less fortunate. The suggested items were toys, canned and dry food, clothes, toiletries, books, and ornaments. The parties were held from December 1st through December 12th, after which, all items were sorted for delivery to five families. The holiday events were termed “parties with a purpose” and were named according to the Twelve Days of Christmas carol. The deliveries to the selected families brought immense gratitude and joy and were fuel to continue the efforts year after year. Now, as the organization celebrates 25 years with expansion in service scope and chapter growth, it is important to recognize those women who joined them and stepped out on faith to make a difference: Betty Sanders, Valra Johnson, Lois Bullock, Cherry Harris, Leticia Plummer, Elena Marsh, Leslie Thompson, Christine LeVeaux, Angela Walkes, and Ursula Washington. These 12 charter members began a tradition that has established nine chapters: Houston, Oakland, DC Metro, New York, Detroit, Atlanta, Chicago, Philadelphia, and Loudoun County (VA), and created a sisterhood of over 200 Black philanthropic women who serve with pride the needs within their respective communities. Cheers to 25 years and cheers to an amazing group of ladies who are steadfast and committed to impacting their communities with purpose.

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Greetings from the Historic Houston Chapter of The Twelve Days of Christmas! Maya Angelou once said, “I’ve learned that people will forget what you said, people will forget what you did, but people will never forget how you made them feel.” As Houstonians experience various life challenges, the members of the Houston chapter respond by establishing our presence in the lives of our adopted families. We are in contact with them regularly with information on crucial community resources and provide them with items they need throughout the year, such as school clothing and supplies, Christmas gifts, Easter baskets, and holiday meals three times per year. In addition, our R.E.A.D. initiative continues to distribute high-quality books and provide programming to students in low-income schools. Our Elder Care initiative provides Senior Care Packages to those amongst us who are often unseen: residents in nursing home facilities. Furthermore, we partner with other local charities to support their efforts.


Wherever there is a need, The 12 Days of Christmas Houston Chapter will find a way to meet it, but we cannot do it alone. We are eternally grateful to our amazing sponsors, family members, friends, and neighbors who give so generously so that we can achieve our goals and continue to serve our
community with distinction.


As long as there are families in need, we will respond by sharing our time and our talents. We never underestimate the impact we have on the lives of our adopted families. We are the light during their darkest hours. We give them dignity when there is self-doubt. We lift their spirits when they are low. We share hope when they are hopeless. We are philanthropists for children.

Andrea A. Hollingsworth



Gayla Gardner

Donya Gardner, JD


President: Andrea Hollingsworth
Vice President: Marilyn Hunter
Secretary: Valerie Mabin
Corresponding Secretary: Marva Rasberry
Treasurer: Jennifer Warren
Financial Secretary: Kidada Gilbert Lewis, MD
Parliamentarian: Charlene Osborne, PhD
Chaplain: Shwanda Warner

Member-at-Large: Karen Gray Gomez, MD

Marketing Chair: Tawana Walter-Cadien


Daphne Adams

Michelle Bell

Nadia Bruner

Kalilah Duhart

Angela Fisher

LaTreace Harrison

Demetria Johnson

Keisia Galmon

Tara Jones

Brionne Keller

Timika Keller

Marilyn Kenebrew

Stephanie Monarch

Kemi Nurudeen

Maxie Pollard

Venise Richardson

Rhonda Sewell

Keisha Smith-Davis

Tandra Spain

Sonya Vaden

Shwanda Warner

Nakeytta Watson

Kethia Webber


Jackye Alton
Sherise Curd
Wandell Hawkins
Betty Sanders, PhD
Kimberly Silas

Aerin Smith
Tamla Wilson, DMin
Aisha Young, JD
Talibah Young, JD


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Drs. Karen Gray-Gomez

Kemi Nurudeen

Kidada Gilbert-Lewis

(joint donation)

Kenneth + Jennifer Warren

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Andrea + Kendall Hollingsworth 

Donya & Gayla Gardner

Kyle Warren

Maxie Pollard

Sherise Curd

Stephanie Monarch

Jean Burkett

Jeff & Sonya Vaden

Josetta Jones

Marlon Mitchell

Aerin Williams

Brionne Keller

Charlene Osborne

Cydonii Miles

Jane Wagner

Keisia Galmon

Kethia Webber

Marilyn Hunter

Myoshia Boykin Anderson

Tamla Wilson

Timika Keller

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Darryl and Gisselle Wilson

Nina Thornton

Simin Banister

Sippi Khurana

Susan Sarofim

Vicky and Steve Hart

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