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Help make Christmas memories

The Suffolk Cheer Fund will once again raise money this year to help children in Suffolk be able to find gifts under the tree on Christmas morning.

The goal this year is $40,000, and all money raised will stay in the Suffolk community.

“All the money that gets raised here stays here,” said head elf Margie Wiley. “At Christmastime, folks are charitably inclined. We know the money raised by the Cheer Fund stays in Suffolk and it helps Suffolk families, and you can’t say that about all organizations.”

The Cheer Fund started during the Great Depression to provide clothes and food for needy families. It eventually began providing toys for children and teamed up with the Toys for Tots program.

Toys purchased with Cheer Fund donations are distributed by the Salvation Army at its annual toy store in December. Families that receive toys are pre-approved based on financial need.

Last year, the Cheer Fund raised more than $43,000 from foundations, civic groups, churches, businesses and individuals.

Due to the community’s generosity, 2,319 children in 1,101 families received three new toys, which their parents were able to choose at the Salvation Army’s toy store.

To help get folks into the Christmas spirit this year, Wiley said people are encouraged to post their Christmas memories on the Suffolk Cheer Fund Facebook page. The Suffolk News-Herald will also feature the Christmas memories of some Suffolk notables over the next few weeks.

Cheer Fund donations 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.

Donations for the Cheer Fund are accepted year-round. 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 at 130 S. Saratoga St. Monday through Friday from 8:30 a.m. to 5 p.m.

Online giving is also available. Visit Suffolk Cheer Fund on Facebook to find a PayPal link.