$12,000 more to go

Published 1:46 pm Thursday, December 24, 2015

Christmas is here, and thousands of children across Suffolk will wake up to toys under the tree this morning thanks to the generosity of dozens of donors to the Cheer Fund.

“Each year, many people give thanks for all that they have and also feel charitably inclined to give to others that have less,” said Margie Wiley, top elf for the Cheer Fund. “It is with those thoughts in mind that I would like to thank everyone who has given to the Cheer Fund this year.”

The Cheer Fund has raised $27,600 this year but remains more than $12,000 short of its $40,000 goal.

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The Cheer Fund was started by the Suffolk News-Herald during the Great Depression to raise money for families in need. It initially focused on clothes and shoes but eventually turned to collecting toys for children.

The newspaper staff handles publicity and bookkeeping for the fund, and an independent board manages it, allowing all donations — save for a required $50 annual fee to the State Corporation Commission — to go toward toys.

The Cheer Fund partners with Toys for Tots to purchase toys.

“When the Cheer Fund was started, it was during a time of great need, and each year we look around and see where that need still continues today,” Wiley said. “So many children are able to have a toy to open on Christmas Day because of the generosity of others through donations to the Cheer Fund. Thank you again for your support, and God bless.”

Cheer Fund donations are accepted all year long. They are printed in the Suffolk News-Herald and can be made in honor of or in memory of a loved one. The donor can be listed anonymously if he chooses. The donor can also have his photograph taken giving the check to be published in the newspaper. To give, write a check payable to the Cheer Fund and mail it to P.O. Box 1220, Suffolk, VA 23439, or stop by our office Monday through Friday from 8:30 a.m. to 5 p.m.