By Lynne Marsala Basche
This holiday season, our community’s needs have never been greater. Find a cause that is dear to your heart, and see how you can help. Visit an organization’s web site to learn about special programs and highest demands. Most larger organizations offer online secure payment processing, so donating money directly to a favorite cause is safer than ever.
The following are just a few organizations that support those who are struggling in Douglas County, as well as the Denver metro area this holiday season:
Buffalo Ridge Elementary (BRE) School Holiday Outreach (through December 18)
Help BRE collect non-food items for Panther Pantry, including laundry detergent, shampoo/conditioner, soap, toothpaste, toothbrushes, diapers, wipes, paper products and household cleaners. Holiday Outreach boxes, located in the entryway at BRE, are available for all community members.
Denver Dumb Friends League (DDFL) Paws to Give (through January 5)
Visit any of the three DDFL facilities to donate money for the care and maintenance of animals in need. Complete a “paw” decoration with your name and holiday message for both staff and animals. Donations can also be made online at www.ddfl.org.
Douglas/Elbert Task Force (DETF) Santa’s Sharing and Toy Chest (through December 15)
Sponsor a family this Christmas by participating in the DETF Santa’s Sharing and Toy Chest programs. Program options include being a direct or an indirect sponsor, donating new toys to the Toy Chest program, and purchasing gift cards. More information, including the sponsor form is available at www.detaskforce.org.
Denver Rescue Mission’s Christmas Banquet (through December 20)
Take part in the Mission’s Christmas Banquet for the homeless and hungry by donating money or by bringing canned food and non-perishable items (e.g., vegetables, pasta, peanut butter, fruit and pumpkin) to the Lawrence Street shelter. For additional information, visit www.denverrescuemission.org.
Salvation Army (through Christmas Eve)
Join the Salvation Army’s annual Red Kettle holiday campaign by donating money to the drums at King Soopers, or by donating online at www.onlineredkettle.org. All donations made during the annual drive stay within the community where the money is raised.
Santa’s Elves (registration deadline December 7)
Become an elf and encourage your kids to purchase presents for other children. (Adults can participate, too!) On December 14, all presents are delivered at a party at the Rude Recreational Center where other elves meet and have the opportunity to meet the families that they have helped. Visit www.santaselvesdenver.org for additional information.
The Women’s Crisis and Family Outreach Center still needs your help. Food donations, including frozen turkeys and grocery gift cards are being collected for families. To sponsor a family or to arrange for a food or gift card donation, contact Heather Orr at 303-688-1094 extension 15 or by e-mail.
Your generosity will make someone’s holiday sparkle. Support our community, and prove that it is better to give than to receive.