As the holiday season approaches, it’s time to start thinking about gifts for friends and family, and the celebration of time-honored traditions.
But with the holidays comes another season of charity, goodwill and giving back for the less fortunate or underserved in the community.
If you are looking for a Forsyth County charity event or drive for this holiday season, here are some that will be accepting donations in the next month.
From now until Dec. 15, the Forsyth County Fire Department will be collecting toy donations for the 16th annual Aerial’s House Toy Collection Drive.
According to Division Chief Jason Shivers of the Forsyth County Fire Department, local residents can bring new unwrapped toys to any Forsyth County fire station or to the public safety complex at 3520 Settingdown Road. After Thanksgiving, residents will also have the option to drop off donations under the Forsyth County Administration Building Christmas Tree, at 110 East Main St., in Cumming, Shivers said.
“This year is the 16th year of our Aerial’s House Program, (and) it continues to grow year to year and has become a staple of the firefighter outreach program during the holiday season,” Shivers said. “We are grateful for the outpouring of community support during this time.”
He said that they are asking for gifts for both boys and girls, newborn to 18 years old, and they will accept gift cards.
More information on donating can be found by calling Firefighter Jeff Lyons at (678) 513-5899. For more information about the distribution of toys, call The Place of Forsyth County at (770) 887-1098.
Toys for Tots
Ingram Funeral Home in Cumming is accepting Toys for Tots donations for local children in need this holiday season.
Until Dec.19 they will be accepting donations at their location of Ingram Avenue in Cumming.
They also invite anyone from the local community to join them from noon to 4 p.m. Dec. 2 at the funeral home for a Christmas celebration, with hot chocolate, pictures with Santa and the opportunity to write a letter to a military service member.
For more information call (770) 887-2388.
Forsyth County Senior Services Holiday Gift Angels
If you want to play the role of Christmas elf for a local senior citizen, Forsyth County Senior Services has a program just for you.
According to a news release from Forsyth County Senior Services, that to become a gift angel one must pick up a gift request tag to be paired with a Forsyth County senior, buy the requested gift and bring it to any of the senior services location by the end of November.
Gift request tags can be found at the Center at Charles Place and Sexton Hall Enrichment Center, from 8 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. Monday through Friday and at the Hearthstone Lodge Community Center, from 7 a.m. to 5:30 p.m. Monday through Friday.
The release states that gifts should be delivered unwrapped in a gift bag with the request tag attached.
“The Holiday Gift Angels Program is a great way to make the holidays special for someone in the community,” Senior Services Director Ruthie Brew said in the release. “During the holiday season, the gifts provided help remind our seniors that someone is thinking about them.”
More information can be found at (770) 781-2178 or www.forsythco.com/seniors.
Samaritan’s Purse Operation Christmas Child
In the next week, Samaritan’s Purse International Relief will be accepting donations of shoe boxes packed with toys, school supplies and hygiene items for kids around the world at several drop-off locations in Forsyth County.
According to a press release from Samaritan’s Purse, from Nov. 12 to 19, local residents can drop off their donations at First Redeemer Church, Coal Mountain Baptist Church and Cumming Baptist Church at various times.
Samaritan’s Purse suggests that all shoe boxes be a normal size, marked with the gender and age range of the child – ages 2-4, 5-9, 10-14 – and given a shipping label printed from their website.
For more information, visit Samaritan’s Purse online at www.samaritanspurse.org.
This list will be updated as the holiday season progresses.