Help Those Who Help Others During Holiday Season
There are plenty of organizations who make an extra-special effort to distribute food and clothing during the holiday season. They can use your help.
Want to express your holiday spirit by helping those who have fallen on some hard times?
There are plenty of your neighbors out there who volunteer year-round but make an even more special effort to help those in need during the holidays. You can help them by providing food, clothing and other items.
TAP-IN, located at 281 County Road, Barrington, in the public library building, provides food, clothing, household items, and transportation assistance for families and individuals in need. The all-volunteer organization is always accepting donations.
TAP-IN will be providing 325 food baskets for those in need this Thanksgiving, so food donations are still needed and will be gratefully accepted.
For larger, bulky items, such as furniture, please call ahead to ensure TAP-IN has the space to accommodate your donation. It's open Monday through Friday from 9 to 12 noon. Or call 401-247-1444.
Churches and synagogues
TAP-IN also accepts donations of food from just about every church and temple in Barrington, said Barbara Simone, a parishioner at St Luke's Church. So, you can make your donation to one of the churches or Temple Habonim, which will pass it on to TAP-IN.
Shaw's supermarket in the Barrington Plaza has three food donation baskets in the store. Shoppers can choose which organization they'd like to donate to -- TAP-IN, WJAR Channel 10, or the East Bay Community Action Program.
East Bay Community Action Program
The East Bay Community Action Program, located at 100 Bullocks Point Ave, Riverside, operates a food pantry year-round for anyone in the East Bay. It is open Monday and Friday 10 to 2, Tuesday and Thursday 12 to 4, and Wednesday from 10 to 2 and 4 to 6. They are happy to accept donations of food from individuals as well as organizations. Call 437-1000.
East Bay Cares
East Bay Cares was created at the end of 2008 by David Coie, the Exalted Ruler of the Bristol County Elks, an organization dedicated to doing good works in their local communities. Funded through grants and donations, East Bay Cares seeks to supplement items that may be missing from local food programs throughout the East Bay.
If you'd like to make a donation of food items to East Bay Cares, you can leave items in a box at the Elks lodge, 1 Constitution Street, Bristol. Monetary donations may be mailed to the Bristol County Elks (memo East Bay Cares), at the same address. Donations left with a name and address will be acknowledged with a thank you letter.
The Bayside YMCA, 70 West Street, Barrington, is collecting food in the lobby from now until Nov. 19, also for TAP-IN. It will also be collecting winter coats from now until Nov. 23.
Individuals and families also can turn up on Nov. 26 from 10 to 12 to select a coat, or they can bring a coat and exchange it for another (great for families with growing children).
Beginning Dec. 1 and running through Dec. 17, the 'Y' will also be accepting donations of new, unwrapped toys, clothing, and gift certificates for families in need. For any questions, call 245-2444 or visit www.ymcagreaterprovidence.org/bayside.
Barrington Coalition of Community Services
Barrington schools social worker Pat Beauchemin was instrumental 18 months ago in pulling together a group of service organizations into the Barrington Coalition of Community Services. The group works with clergy, the Elks, and Heartworks, a non-profit group that performs acts of kindness, including providing meals and food baskets, to try and "cut through the red tape" to provide a more effective safety net for the residents of Barrington, Beauchemin said. Interested in helping? Contact Beauchemin at email@example.com.
If you want to make Christmas a little brighter for an entire family this season, consider making a donation to Adopt-A-Family. You can "adopt" an entire family (families vary in number) or an individual.
Businesses or individuals are welcome to "adopt" and receive a wish list from the family in need. The adopters then purchase gifts or gift cards for the family or individual, who receives the items in time to go under the tree.
Audrey Fields, who coordinates the program, said it's important to think about teens when considering a family this holiday season. She said people think it's hard to buy for teens, but something as simple as movie passes, a gas card, or a gift card to a store such as Walmart can make a big difference in the life of a teen in need. If you want to adopt this holiday season, call Fields at 435-7876.
Do you know of other volunteer organizations who are working hard to help people in need during the holidays. Please leave the information in our comments section – we'd love to help spread the word and a little holiday cheer at the same time!