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Help Cheer Fund reach its goal

Many of us have fond memories of Christmases past, whether it was when we were children ourselves, when we returned home as young adults to celebrate the holidays with our aging parents, or when we were able to watch our own children excitedly enjoy the magic of the season.

The Suffolk News-Herald has spent the last few weeks choosing a few prominent citizens to share their favorite Christmas memories with us to put on the front page of the paper. It was a fun series of stories, and we hope you’ve enjoyed reading them as much as we enjoyed writing them.

But the true purpose of the series was to bring a little attention to the Suffolk News-Herald Cheer Fund, which annually raises tens of thousands of dollars — this year’s goal is $40,000 — to purchase toys to be distributed to local families in need.

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.

Families that receive toys are pre-approved based on financial need. The Salvation Army Suffolk Corps is an important partner in this effort, as they bring in the families and distribute the toys purchase with Cheer Fund money.

To us, the Cheer Fund is the most “Suffolk” charity there is. Every bit of the money raised helps children right here in Suffolk experience the wonder of finding gifts under the tree on Christmas morning. None of the money is sent to other localities or to some national organization, and every penny — minus a small annual registration fee required by the state — is spent for toys. The News-Herald does all the accounting and publicity work needed.

You can help us raise money for the Cheer Fund.

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.