Even in tough times, the generosity of Columbia County residents should make us all proud of this community.
A story Sunday in The News-Times noted how local charitable agencies this year have been faced with a larger than ever number of residents needing assistance. It's a story that's common across the country.
For example, the Columbia County Foundation for Children has seen requests for Christmas assistance for families rise to nearly 750 this year; that's up from 474 last year. The Columbia County Cares food bank reports feeding an average of 473 families per month this year, up from 448 last year. Other agencies report similar increases in demand.
But as need has risen, so has the community's response.
"Even though we're doing more this year than we've ever done in the past, people are being more generous because they know the economy isn't as good," Lou Reda, executive director of Columbia County Cares, tells news editor Donnie Fetter.
And Donna Lee, director of the Columbia County Foundation for Children, says this year is the first time that every school in the county has pitched in to "adopt" at least one of the agency's families for Christmas.
Columbia County often is viewed as an island of plenty, but there are still plenty of needy people in the community. It is a credit to the county that our residents are recognizing that need and responding with generosity.
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