The best gift you could give this Christmas might be to someone you don’t even know.
Christmas is a season of joy for most of us. But for those who have suffered a serious illness, a job loss or other financial reversal, a gift from The Augusta Chronicle’s Empty Stocking Fund can bring hope in a time of sadness. For those who have experienced chronic poverty, it can brighten, if only briefly, their lives. Gifts to the fund often help pay for food, clothing, medicine and other necessities.
The Empty Stocking Fund, founded early during the Great Depression, has been an expression of holiday generosity to the needy in our area for 83 years. We want to thank all those who have given so far this year and in years past.
However, after raising more than $100,000 for seven consecutive years, $93,000 was collected last year. Although that amount helped more than 1,000 families, it would be wonderful to reach or exceed the $100,000 mark again this year – not to pass an arbitrary goal, but to be able to provide more help during this season of celebration.
Because the newspaper administers the fund, every dollar collected goes to the recipients of your generosity.
According to the National Retail Federation, the average shopper is expected to spend more than $700 this year on gifts, decorations and other holiday merchandise. Certainly we all want to be generous to friends and family, to express our love and appreciation for them, but we should all be able to spare a few dollars – if not more – for those who would otherwise have nothing this Christmas, many of them children.
You can mail donations to The Augusta Chronicle’s Empty Stocking Fund, P.O. Box 1928, Augusta, GA 30903-1928.
Or you can drop off donations at The Chronicle News Building, 725 Broad St., weekdays between 8 a.m. and 5 p.m., or at the newspaper’s Columbia County Bureau, in the Publix shopping center at 4272 Washington Road, Suite 3B, weekdays from 8:30 a.m. to 5:30 p.m.
You also can donate online at augustachronicle.com/emptystocking.
Donations are tax-deductible.