Centre 55 needs your help to Share A Christmas

Yes, as hard as it is to believe, Christmas will be here and gone next week. Are you ready? Really! Have you bought the food, found the toys, baked the goodies, completed the shopping and wrapping, and decorated your home? Now what?

Here at Community Centre 55 we have been planning for Christmas since January, but we’re still not ready. Not because we haven’t planned properly, it’s because we need your help. We know that we will be providing food and toys to over 1,000 needy families, so I am asking you to help by making a donation to our Share A Christmas program.

Christmas is a time for giving, and what better way to share in the Christmas spirit than by making a donation, so a family will have food and toys for the holidays?

Let me tell you what 17-year-old Allison Plummer is doing this Christmas. Instead of getting gifts this year, she has asked her family to give her money so she can adopt a family, through Centre 55. She will purchase, wrap and deliver Christmas to a young family in need. She will even bake a pie for their Christmas dinner. What a generous spirit this young woman has.

Not that you have to donate for a whole family.  It can be as easy as picking up some extra non-perishable food items (i.e. pasta sauce, Kraft dinner, tuna, etc.) when you’re shopping.  We are taking donations here at Centre 55, FreshCo (Gerrard and Victoria Park), Mark Richards’ office on Queen Street, local CIBC locations and Price Chopper (Leslie Street).

For those of you that are following the Mayan calendar that is supposedly coming to an end on Dec. 21, this could either mean a reason to celebrate with a charitable gift or one last opportunity to do some good.

The Christmas season can be a difficult time of year for those who are in need.  The stress of the season mixed with financial concerns can be a lot for anyone to handle.   Imagine what Christmas would be like without a special Christmas meal or presents under the tree. At Community Centre 55, our Share A Christmas program has been helping needy families for 31 years. Sadly, the need for assistance is growing each year.

All the food and toys that we receive will be delivered to the families on  Saturday, Dec. 22, along with a hamper of perishable items for a hearty Christmas meal. Please, help us, so needy families can enjoy a festive meal and be able to have their children open a gift on Christmas morning.

Here are some easy ways to help your neighbours in need:

1. A monetary donation to our Share A Christmas campaign would help us buy turkeys, fruit, vegetables and other perishable foods;

2. When shopping, please consider buying some of the following much needed non-perishable products for donation: pasta sauce, cereal, Kraft dinner, canned fruits and vegetables, canned meats and fish, peanut butter, soup, stews and baby food. Also, food is needed for cats and dogs.

3. Plan a non-perishable food collection at your family or business parties;

4. Support our Teen Angel program by buying much-needed teen presents or gift cards;

5. Volunteer your time to sort, pack and deliver the food and toys to the families this week.

Remember, every little bit helps.

Also, we just want to say a big thank you to everyone involved in making the Beach Santa Claus Parade a huge success.  If you participated, volunteered, donated, marshalled, watched from the sidewalk, took pictures or provided input, we are truly grateful to you. This parade was the kick off to our Share A Christmas program. The generous donations from the parade help us purchase perishable food items.

Thank you for your generosity.  Hundreds of children will be truly grateful.

We are located at 97 Main St, and can be reached at 416 691-1113.

Merry Christmas!

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