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Needs of charities especially acute during holidays

Posted: December 14, 2011 - 1:03am

The work goes on year-round for charitable organizations serving our community. But the needs seem to be more obvious during the Christmas season.

In large part, it’s probably because of the contrast: Shoppers are loading up their cars to the point that the sheriff’s office has to warn them to keep their loot out of sight lest they attract criminals. Yet, as Jenna Martin’s News-Times story noted Sunday, charities are painfully aware of the everyday needs of those they serve.

The volunteers of Columbia County Cares, for example, work every day to provide meals to nearly 500 families each month.During December, families needing food assistance also are allowed to pick out a toy or two, a special touch for those deciding whether to eat or pay bills.

Then there’s When HELP Can’t Wait. The non-profit, all-volunteer agency helps provide amenities, all year, to residents of area nursing homes – with special attention for those who get little family attention.

In anticipation of Christmas, the agency is hoping to round up more volunteers to help “adopt” nursing homes, and to help collect items for gift bags for some 250 residents.

Also at Christmas time, but all year-round, Child Enrichment seeks help in providing the basics for the abused and abandoned children in its care.

One pressing need is for new socks and underwear for children of all ages; The News-Times office is available as a dropoff site for that drive through Monday, Dec. 19, or donors can call (706) 737-4631 to make other delivery arrangements.

There are plenty more: The Columbia County Foundation for Children, for example, or the Santa Wheels program. All provide great services, with little fanfare, to citizens in need.

So, if you find you can spare a few coins this Christmas season, or have a little time on your hands, every little bit helps.

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