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Time Is Short But The Need Is Large, Donate If You Can This Year

The holiday season is here. Many in our community are busy shopping, planning family get-togethers and generally feeling festive.

We hope it is also a time when our community comes together to help those who need a helping hand both during this holiday season and during the rest of the year, too. With Thanksgiving coming a week later than usual, charitable organizations are facing a quick turnaround to help those who are struggling during this holiday season.

With that in mind, we note the Marine Corps Toys for Tots Campaign, spearheaded locally by The Resource Center, is accepting donations of unwrapped toys through Friday at dozens of collection sites locally. For more information, email toysfortots@resourcecenter.org.

The Salvation Army is accepting donations for its Christmas assistance programs that include toys and Christmas food boxes. For more information about specific needs, call the Salvation Army at 664-4108. Don’t forget as well the Salvation Army’s Angel Tree program, where local businesses and retail locations host special Angel Trees that allow donors to adopt “angels” by selecting a tag with the needs of a local child. The donor fulfills the Christmas wishes on the tag by selecting age-appropriate gifts of toys and clothing and returning the unwrapped gifts to the location on the tag. For more information, call 315-434-1392.

The holiday season is also a key time for two major fundraising campaigns that provide assistance to area residents and organizations throughout the year. We refer, of course, to the Salvation Army’s annual Red Kettle Campaign and the United Way of Southern Chautauqua County’s annual campaign.

Bell ringers are always needed for the Red Kettle Drive, and anyone who has some time to spare and the desire to make a difference can call 664-4108 for more information. While the Salvation Army is doing more and more to collect money for the drive either online or through smartphone apps, dropping your change into the kettle just seems more satisfying.

The annual United Way campaign has a $1.33 million goal this year. That money supports programs benefitting thousands of people in the Jamestown area. For more information about donating, 483-1561 or visit www.uwayscc.org.

Not everyone can afford to make large donations, but many in our community can find some way to help — and any gift, no matter how small, will be appreciated. Time is short and the need is large, yet we have faith that the community will come through this year.

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