(Posted Nov. 16, 2017)
Want to bring cheer to families in need this holiday season? Check out these opportunities to donate toys and more around Madison County.
Madison County Job & Family Services and London Fire Department
Every year, the Holiday Helpers Firefighters Toy Drive provides gifts to between 700 and 800 children, ages 0 to 12.
The public can get involved a couple of ways, either by adopting a family and purchasing gifts specifically for those children, or by donating toys or money without adopting a particular family. Donations can be dropped off at Job & Family Services, 200 Midway St., London, or the London Fire Department, 103 E. High St.
Holiday Helpers supplies adopters with first names, ages and wish lists of the children. Participants then spend no more than $50 per child and purchase no more than three gifts per child.
Madison County families in need who want to receive gifts are encouraged to sign up soon; the deadline is Dec. 20. Forms are available at Job & Family Services.
For details, call (740) 852-4770.
Jefferson Township Fire Department
The fire fighters are collecting toys for underprivileged children ages newborn to 9 years old and gift cards for children ages 10 to 16 years old who live in the West Jefferson area. Gift cards and new, unwrapped toys can be dropped off at the fire station, Jefferson Local Schools, and Hurt-Battelle Memorial Library. Additionally, monetary donations can be made out to “Firefighters Toy Drive” and mailed to the Jefferson Township Fire Department, 745 W. Main St., West Jefferson OH 43162.
Families in need who want to sign up to receive gifts can pick up applications from the fire station, schools and library. Completed applications are due back by Nov. 30.
Contact Jen Miller at West Jefferson High School, (614) 879-7681, ext. 2300.
Tri-County Joint Fire District in Mount Sterling
It is time again to fill out applications for the fire fighters toy drive. Those filling out applications must provide ID and proof of residence (electric bill, phone bill or the like). Applicants must reside in the Tri-County Fire service district. Forms can be picked up at the fire house Monday-Friday, 7 a.m.-5 p.m., and can be turned in through Dec. 6.
Monetary donations and toys can be dropped off until Dec. 6. Ages provided for this year are 0 to 12 years old. For details, call the fire house at (740) 869-2643.
Plain City Christmas Baskets
The Plain City Church Fellowship has collected names, addresses and phone numbers of Plain City and the Jonathan Alder School District residents in need of assistance over the holidays.
Food can be donated through local churches, at Jonathan Alder schools or the Plain City Food Bank. Monetary donations may be given to local churches or the “Christmas Basket Fund’ and sent to Plain City Presbyterian Church, 231 E. Main St., Plain City, OH 43064.
Another way to participate is to adopt a family and buy the Christmas presents that go with their food basket. Families can be “adopted’ through local churches or by calling Plain City Presbyterian Church at (614) 873-5011 or Dave McCray at (614) 408-1617. Guidelines are provided for purchasing gifts for appropriate age levels.
Volunteers are needed at 9 a.m. Dec. 16 at Plain City Presbyterian Church to pack and deliver baskets.
Contact Jim Kaufman, food drive chairman, at (937) 243-1653, for details.
West Jefferson Community Association Adopt-a-Family and Veterans of Foreign Wars Post 7005
These two groups are collecting toys for children up to high school age who live in West Jefferson and/or are enrolled in Jefferson Local Schools.
New unwrapped gifts can be dropped off at the VFW post at 1 Veterans Way or donors can call Vickie Edwards at (614) 582-1328 to make other drop-off arrangements.
Another way to help is to “adopt” families for which to buy gifts. Tags that list the clothing sizes and toy wishes of area children decorate trees at West Jefferson Hardware. Participants take a tag and fulfill the wishes listed on it, then return the gifts to the hardware store by the date listed on the tag. Donors also can call Edwards for the info.
The Community Association also is accepting monetary donations to buy toys. Make checks out to “Community Association Adopt-a-Family” and mail them to Edwards’ attention at P.O. Box 142, West Jefferson, OH 43162.
West Jefferson area families in need can pick up applications at Norwood Elementary. Applications are due back at the school by the date listed on the form. Applications will be cross-checked with other non-profit organizations and Madison County Job and Family Services to prevent duplication.