Chapel Hill and Carrboro businesses and non-profit organizations are stepping up this holiday season in the spirit of giving.
Contributors from around the area are working to organize fundraisers and promote programs in order to raise money for the community.
Habitat for Humanity
Habitat for Humanity of Orange County is gathering donations from residents throughout the area during the holidays in an effort to gain funding.
“This is the time of year when the majority of our funding — primarily from individuals — comes in because of the end of the tax year,” said Executive Director Susan Levy.
“We send out letters and solicit support from those who are ongoing supporters or who volunteer with Habitat.”
She said Habitat conducts an alternative giving program in which cards are sent to those who wish to donate money in Habitat’s honor.
These cards are worth a donation of $10.
Toys for Tots and Food Bank
Harris Teeter is participating in holiday giving through Toys for Tots and food bank donation programs.
“The Toys for Tots program is through the Marine Corps,” said David Raynor, manager of the Carrboro Harris Teeter.
“The public donates new toys and the Marines pick them up and distribute it.”
The store’s food donation program — implemented by Feeding America — allows residents to drop off canned or boxed goods at a local Harris Teeter. The goods are then taken to community food banks.
We Build People Campaign
Jerry Whortan, executive director of the Chapel Hill-Carrboro YMCA, said the organization conducts fundraising year-round for the We Build People campaign, a scholarship program.
“People donate about $28,000 worth of scholarships for day camp, summer camp, after-school care and a variety of other classes,” Whortan said.
“We make it known that we’re still accepting donations so if people want to give one more time before the end of the year, they can do that.”
Though donations have been tighter over the years due to the economy, Whortan said there is generally an increase in donations over the holidays.
He said the public may give by visiting the YMCA’s website.
Light-A-Luminary is sponsored by Chapel Hill’s Ronald McDonald House and is the biggest fundraiser during the holiday season, Executive Director Shelley Day said.
“We have forty-five neighborhoods around Chapel Hill that participate,” she said. “They have a night in which each neighborhood sets out luminaries.”
For residents interested in getting involved, luminary kits are available for purchase for $6 each. The kits include eight white luminary candles, plastic cups and bags, sand and an instruction sheet.
Last year, Day said the Ronald McDonald House raised $55,000 from the project.
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