This is the season for special events and fundraisers to help those in our communities who need and deserve special assistance.
The Salvation Army bell ringers are out in full force. Shoppers are dropping their coins and bills into the kettles as the Salvation Army conducts its major fundraising for the year. The Tree of Lights campaign has a goal of $270,000 to defray the Salvation Army's many expenses throughout the year.
Another Salvation Army project last week resulted in the donation of some 4,000 coats, gloves and other winter apparel. The donations were dropped off at Schnucks Supermarket in Cape Girardeau, a store tradition that has helped keep thousands of area residents warm through the winter.
And the festive Thanksgiving dinner at the Salvation Army fed more than 1,000 individuals, including more than 300 homebound recipients, who otherwise might have had a bleak holiday.
Two other important programs will result in gifts for needy children and for needy older residents.
Toybox is the annual effort involving the Cape Girardeau Jaycees and the Southeast Missouri's efforts to fill toy wish lists for needy children. There are numerous drop-off locations listed each day on Page 2A of the Southeast Missourian.
Christmas for the Elderly fills the specific needs of older adults who usually ask for necessities like toiletries and other personal items. It is a joint project of the Jaycees, Missouri Division of Senior Services, Hoover Eldercare, Area Agency on Aging, Cape Girardeau County Health Department and the Southeast Missourian.
Cash donations for both Toybox and Christmas for the Elderly may be mailed to P.O. Box 4, Cape Girardeau, Mo., 63702-0004.
All contributions, whether gifts or cash, are appreciated.
You can help brighten this Christmas season by joining those who want to add as much cheer as possible to a joyous time of the year.