Donations at Area Charities Lagging, as Demand Rises; Senator’s Offices to Serve as Drop-off Points
State Senator Patty Ritchie today issued an urgent appeal to Central and Northern New Yorkers, asking them to add just one more item to their last-minute Christmas shopping lists to help complete the holiday for a needy child.
Senator Ritchie said she had been contacted by several local organizations in Oswego, Jefferson and St. Lawrence Counties, who are worried that a sharp increase in the number of requests for help means some children will not be receiving anything this Christmas.
"A lot of groups that help children at Christmas time are telling me that they need help right away," Senator Ritchie said. "Time is running out. The agencies say they will be turning children away this year unless something happens. I am asking my friends and the people of Central and Northern New York to join me in making sure no child wakes up Christmas morning thinking Santa forgot them."
"I've always believed that what's special about living in our part of the world is the way people look out for each other when times get tough," Senator Ritchie said. "This has been a difficult year for a lot of people, but I know that I would not be able to enjoy the holidays with my friends and families if I didn't do what I could to help out my neighbors who are in trouble.
“I believe in the spirit of Christmas. If we work together, we can make a Christmas miracle for children and families who have nowhere else to turn."
Senator Ritchie announced that her district offices in Oswego, Watertown and Ogdensburg will serve as drop-off points for gifts, weekdays until next Friday, December 23.
Oswego: 46 E. Bridge St., 1st Floor (donations will be forwarded to the Salvation Army)
Watertown: State Office Building, 317 Washington St., 4th floor (Community Action Planning Council)
Ogdensburg: 330 Ford St., basement of City Hall (St. Lawrence County Toys for Tots)
“I know that many families have already purchased a gift for programs that are run by these organizations, as well as local churches and civic organizations, but the need is still great, and even the donation of one additional gift can mean a lot to a child and family in need,” Senator Ritchie said.
Gifts should be new and unwrapped. Suggestions for gift donations include toys, dolls, models, games, winter clothes, hats, scarves, mittens, video games and gift cards.