I just love this time of year, from the time spent with family and friends around the Thanksgiving table, to the countdown to a new year.
Even though I cringe when Christmas decorations start showing up next to Halloween candy and costumes, I can’t help but smile when I see peppermintstick ice cream in the store and when I get my coffee from a red Christmas cup from Starbucks earlier than December.
Although I do love Christmas, I feel like something gets lost every year as we rush around buying gifts for people and running here and there trying to get everything ready.
In the hustle and bustle of the holiday season, I hope we can all remember the things that mean most to us whether its spending quality time with family and friends, or for people like myself, remembering Christmas celebrates the birth of Jesus Christ.
And, as we help make Christmas merry for those closest to us, we have the opportunity to help make a happier holiday for strangers right here in our own community.
The past couple of weeks I had the opportunity to go take pictures and get stories about different organizations assisting those who need help.
I hate to sound cliché, but my heart swells at the way this community gives back to help those in need.
I’ve said this before, but it is truly one of the things that makes Lassen County a great place to live.
California Correctional Center with assistance from Susanville Supermarket IGA, was able to give 100 food baskets to Crossroads Ministries, meaning families that wouldn’t normally have a Thanksgiving dinner were able to have one this year.
With help from the community, the Boy Scouts were able to give twice as much food to Crossroads and the Salvation Army, items the organizations will not only use during Christmas, but throughout the year.
Whatever cause you support, there are plenty of ways to give back right in your own community this year.
The Salvation Army will be putting up its Angel Tree in Walmart; Toys for Tots is starting to collect items to be distributed later in December.
The Lassen County District Attorney’s Victims/Witness assistance program is collecting food for its annual Food 4 Families, Safeway is holding a food drive, Lassen Family Services needs items for its women’s shelter and is wanting educational toys for children this year.
If your passion is to ensure the health and welfare of animals, donate a can or bag of food to the Lassen Animal Rescue (LAR), a non-profit organization in Westwood, who has started a food bankfor petsand has helped find more homes for more than 1,300 dogs.
Donating some food might be just the gift a family is looking for so they can keep their pet.
Last week I had the opportunity to learn more about LAR and its new food bank and was impressed with all the volunteer work and the dogs who have found homes due to those efforts.
As a reporter, I love writing stories that bring awareness of community needs and ways to give because I truly believe the local organizations do a wonderful job of serving and helping others and it would be difficult to maintain those services without the support of the community.
Thanks to all of you who work so hard to make a difference.
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