Shorter time to give this season

This is a heartfelt and giving time of year. It is common and easy to reach into our wallets for the children of the poor, or the homeless and the hungry. There is another group who deserves our charity at Christmas. It is the elderly, many of whom have out-lived those who might care for them at the holidays. They live in assisted living, nursing and group homes around our area, and deserve some a present this holiday.
 
The Sharing Tree is  located at Aging Services for Communities. A second, smaller tree is located at the Happy Hour bar. As in the past, the seniors whose gift ideas are on the tree  ask for heart-breakingly little. A lap robe. Body wash. A tooth brush and toothpaste. Hard candy. Kleenex. Most of the requests are very practical and not extravagant. They don't ask for anything, like a child would like toys. They just ask for things they need, things the rest of us take for granted.
 
The program looks to fill 100 gift requests by the December 14 deadline.
 
The gifts are easy to purchase and won't break the bank. The maximum is $20.  
 
Last year the community embraced the Sharing Tree, making sure every request was filled. Let's do the same this year!
 
Aging Services for Communities is located at 212 1st St. S. The second Sharing Tree is at the Happy Hour Bar, 210 1st St. S.
 
Other ways of giving
 
If you don't want to trek down First Street and participate in the Sharing Tree, there are other ways to make the season bright for the disadvantaged. The Santa Anonymous helps low income families with children newborn to 18-years old living at home in Le Sueur County. The last day to donate is December 13. For information call Rita Picha at 507-364-5184. Donations should be made by December 13. You can drop off your gifts at CornerStone State Bank,  Frandsen Bank and Trust, Holy Redeemer School and the TCU public schools. 
Like those on the Sharing Tree, these families are looking for practical gifts, like mittens, hats, scarves, underwear, quilts and bedding. Of course, the children would also like a new toy.
 
The Arts and Heritage Center of Montgomery is also collecting toys and cash for local families through the Toys for Tots Program.
 
It's nice to receive during the holidays, and participating in one of these programs will give you the best gift of all. The gift of caring.