Many ways to give this year

Published 5:17 pm Saturday, December 2, 2017

If you’re looking for a way to make your holiday — and someone else’s — a little brighter, Suffolk offers many opportunities that will help you seize the joy of the season.

Here are a few of our favorites:

  • The Suffolk Redevelopment and Housing Authority is sponsoring an Angel Tree, featuring 199 children or “angels” who need to be adopted. Children up to 17 years of age have submitted their wishes for toys, clothing, bikes, electronic devices and more, and residents can stop by the office at 530 E. Pinner St. to sponsor an angel.

Donors are not required to stick to the lists they receive. They can donate any age-appropriate gifts, which will be distributed during an event at the SRHA from noon to 3 p.m. Dec. 20.

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“The children are very appreciative for the opportunity to have their wishes granted for the Christmas season that otherwise may not be fulfilled,” Resident Services Specialist Phyllis Harrison said. “Families are relieved because of some of the stresses due to providing gifts for their children and experience the warmth of receiving assistance from generous donors.”

  • The Tidewater Composite Squadron of the Civil Air Patrol is collecting donations for Wreaths Across America, which works to place Christmas on the graves of veterans around the nation during a nationwide wreath-laying ceremony that takes place at Arlington National Cemetery and 1,200 other locations, including the Albert G. Horton Jr. Memorial Veterans Cemetery in Suffolk.

The Horton ceremony is a touching tribute to veterans, and volunteers are needed to help with laying out the thousands of wreaths that will be left at the cemetery.

To make a donation through the Tidewater Composite Squadron, visit and search for “Tidewater Composite Squadron MER-VA-035.” For more information about the Horton cemetery project, or to learn how to participate, visit

  • And finally, an opportunity that is near and dear to our hearts — the Suffolk Cheer Fund. The Suffolk News-Herald started the Cheer Fund 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. This year’s goal is $40,000, and every penny of those donations goes toward the purchase of toys.

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.