AUSTIN -- The search for the Christmas Bureau's director is over.
In a phone interview Wednesday, director Shon Washington told KVUE News he'd only returned to Austin on Sunday after being gone for more than a month.
“Unfortunately I had a loss in the family,” Washington said. “It took me pretty much all of October and all of November.”
Tuesday we went to the former location of the Christmas Bureau of Austin. The windows were covered and the door was locked. We also found their phone number had been disconnected. Washington said that was not surprising.
“We don’t usually have a phone line. We don’t have anything but a website throughout the year,” he said.
He said the Christmas Bureau typically operates only in November and December each year, and under his leadership they have changed locations every year, including this year.
Washington said they are working to open the Christmas Bureau at 805 Capital Court in the next few days. The location is off of Guadalupe and Lamar. He said the Bureau will open its doors by December 1st.
The Bureau's website has not been updated since last year. Washington said that needs to be fixed. He also said the ability to make donations on it is normal, that option remains intact year-round. But they haven't raised much.
“We usually have $30,000 by now and we have $153. I repeat that $153,” he said.
Washington admitted time and funds are not on their side, but he said the Christmas Bureau is on its way back to helping needy families this year just like it has for the past 20 before.
Joe Munoz with Blue Santa told KVUE he also heard from Washington on Wednesday. He said APD and Blue Santa officials will hold a news conference Thursday morning with details about the Christmas Bureau and Blue Santa's plan for the holiday season.