Editorial: As Christmas nears, don’t forget neediest in our community – Longview News-Journal

Editor’s note: This editorial originally published Nov. 28, 2021, and has been updated with new information:

The pecan pie has been reduced to remnants of crust, and the turkey is on leftovers duty.

Strings of lights wrapped around houses are illuminating the night, and trees are standing tall through living room windows.

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Yes, Thanksgiving is over, and Christmas is fast approaching.

That also means local nonprofit organizations have started holiday assistance drives.

As you make your shopping lists for family members and friends, we urge you to consider helping the neediest in our city. It’s easy to take for granted a Christmas morning packed with presents, but that isn’t the case for many of our community members.

Numerous Longview agencies are seeking monetary donations as well as toys to brighten the holidays for children and their parents.

Here’s how you can help:

Hiway 80 Rescue MissionHiway 80 Rescue Mission’s annual toy drive continues through Dec. 15. New, unwrapped toy donations can be dropped off at the administration building at 3123 W Marshall Ave. in Longview. 

Toys for Tots: Donation boxes for the Longview Toys for Tots program are at several businesses, including Walmart on Fourth Street, Aldi, Tower Honda, Big 5 Tire & Auto and the Longview News-Journal. For information about donations, call Toys for Tots Coordinator Jerry Crutch at (337) 501-2766 or email jcrutch363@aol.com or tj919oldschool@aol.com. To donate online or for more information, go to longview-tx.toysfortots.org .

Havertys/Newgate Mission Angel Tree: Havertys Furniture and Newgate Mission are teaming again to provide an Angel Tree for the community. This is the third year the tree will not have stockings with children’s names but instead will be decorated with business cards with the group’s website on it. People can then visit the website to view and adopt a child’s wish list and-or provide a monetary donation. Physical donations can be made until Dec. 19 at Havertys Furniture, 1101 W Loop 281. To view/adopt a wish list, donate or for more information, go to www.hnangeltree.org .

Salvation Army: Salvation Army’s Angel Trees will be at its office on Cotton Street, the Longview Mall, McAlister’s Deli, Slim Chickens, Peltier Kia Longview, Southside Bank and Longview Walmarts. A registry at walmart.com also allows people to view and order gifts that have been requested by children. The gifts are then shipped to the Salvation Army, where they are organized and later distributed. Donations can be made until Dec. 12. For information on how to participate, call (903) 215-8463.

Blue Santa — Shop with a Cop: The Longview Police Department’s Blue Santa program will return for the third year with its Shop with a Cop program. Instead of toys, the department is again asking for monetary donations to purchase gift cards that will be used to shop for toys alongside the children receiving them. Cash and check donations will be accepted at the records window inside the Longview Police Department. Checks can be made out to the Blue Santa Project. The program also accepts electronic payments through PayPal on its Facebook page. For information and the QR code for PayPal donations visit tinyurl.com/longviewbluesanta .

Buckner Children and Family Services: Buckner’s annual Christmas Market benefits families served through the organization through the Buckner Family Hope Center, Buckner Family Pathways and HOPES. New, unwrapped toys are needed for children 18 and younger. Toys can purchased at a store or on Buckner’s online wish list at tinyurl.com/mryfx2n5. Donations are accepted through Dec. 8. To drop off gifts, contact Reagan Maldonado at rmaldonado@buckner.org or call (903) 241-2224.

Stock the Sleigh: In conjunction with the 80 Acre Market, the Women’s Center of East Texas (WCET) is holding Stock the Sleigh to benefit children of WCET clients. People can adopt a child by selecting an ornament from the Christmas tree at the 80 Acre Market and scanning the QR code. Donations can be dropped off at the 80 Acre Market at 12229 FM 1650 in Gilmer from Dec. 2 through 4. They can also be dropped off at the WCET at 1011 Wal St #101 from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. through Dec. 3.

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