Plenty of ways to give this holiday season
By: Jim Longworth
As we celebrate and enjoy this holiday season, let’s not forget that there are people beyond our immediate circle of family and friends who could benefit from our love and generosity. Over the past decade, I’ve been able to showcase scores of community organizations on my Triad Today television show, and in the process, I’ve learned that there are several ways we can help these agencies help others. The first is to donate goods. Second is to donate money. And, third is to donate our time. Of course, some nonprofit groups can benefit from all three types of giving. Here, in no particular order, are just a few organizations to which you might lend your support.
Second Harvest Food Bank of Northwest NC
Unfortunately, the Piedmont Triad has one of the worst hunger problems in the nation, and that includes the problem of childhood hunger. To help alleviate this, Second Harvest Food Bank distributes food to churches and nonprofit agencies who feed hungry people in an 18 county area. You can write a check directly to the food bank, or you can drop off non-perishable food items at a number of locations in our area. For more information call (336) 784-5770, or visit www.hungernwnc.org
Goodwill Industries of Northwest NC
Each year, thousands of people in Northwest North Carolina are served by workforce development programs that are administered by Goodwill. Those programs are supported in part by the clothing and other items we donate, which are then sold at Goodwill retail stores. That means, the more items you donate, the more people who will get back to work. Goodwill also welcomes monetary donations. For more information call (336) 724-3621, or visit the website.
Crossnore School and Children’s Home
The first Crossnore school was founded in 1913 as a boarding school for disadvantaged children. The Children’s Home, founded in 1909, began as an orphanage and today serves children in residential group foster care. The two organizations merged in January 2017 in order to serve more children in the Triad and Western North Carolina. The Triad campus is located on Reynolda Road in Winston-Salem. For more information about adoption, to volunteer, or to make a donation, visit the website or call (336) 721-7600.
Cancer Services, Inc.
Their stated mission is “to enhance the quality of life for those living with cancer, and to provide the gift of life through education.” Their services include patient advocacy, medication and financial assistance, providing equipment and supplies, offering peer support groups, and much more. Ninety percent of funds donated to Cancer Services, Inc., go directly to providing client services. In addition to money, you can also donate used equipment and supplies. Call (336) 760-9983, or visit the website.
Greensboro Urban Ministry is on the front lines when it comes to providing emergency assistance. Greensboro Urban Ministry provides homeless families in Guilford County a safe, temporary environment. They also operate a food bank and offer a chaplaincy service. Volunteers are needed to prepare and serve meals, manage shelters, tutor children, and perform a variety of other duties. Monetary donations are also much appreciated. Call (336) 271-5959, or visit the website.
Mtn. Valley Hospice is a nonprofit program that serves a 16-county area in North Carolina and Virginia and provides personalized care for patients at the end of life, as well as comfort to families. Mountain Valley Hospice has six regional offices and operates the Woltz Hospice Home in Mt. Airy and the SECU Hospice Home in Yadkinville. They also specialize in care for terminally ill children and veterans. To give money or inquire about volunteering, call 1-888-789-2922, or visit the website.
Petty Family Foundation
NASCAR legend Richard Petty and his family support a number of charitable organizations and specialized programs, including Paralyzed Veterans of America and Victory Junction Camp, the latter of which provides an uplifting experience for children with severe disabilities and terminal illnesses. To make a donation or learn more, visit the website.
The P.O.W.E.R. of Play Foundation
Founded by former NFL star Ricky Proehl and his wife Kelly, the Foundation works with at-risk youth, teaching them important life lessons in a structured, sports-centered environment. Daily programs are offered at Proehlific Park in Greensboro, which also offers state-of-the-art athletic facilities for adults. Each year, Ricky also teams with Richard Petty to distribute toys to needy children through their “Santa’s Helpers” campaign. To make a donation or for more information, call (336) 665-5233, or visit the website.
Carolina Donor Services and Red Cross
There can be no greater gift at this holiday season than the gift of life, and that’s why you might consider donating blood and signing a donor card. Either gesture requires only a few minutes of your time, and will almost certainly result in saving someone’s life in the future. You can reach Carolina Donor Services at 1-800-200-2672, or at www.carolinadonorservices.org. You can call the Red Cross at (336) 333-2111, or via the internet at the website.
Please remember that your donations of time, money, or goods to area community organizations is vitally important, not just now, but throughout the coming year. It’s also a way for us to expand the circle of people we care about, and that’s something worth celebrating in this season of giving.
Jim Longworth is the host of “Triad Today,” airing on Saturdays at 7:30 a.m. on ABC45 (cable channel 7) and Sundays at 11 a.m. on WMYV (cable channel 15).