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12/31 Editorial

Spirit of giving truly a year-round affair

Another Christmas has come and gone. Thanks to the hard work by a number of groups in and around Polk County, the holiday was a little more joyous for those less fortunate.

But Christmastime makes up just a small part of the 365 days on the calendar, and the need for assistance by members of our communities doesn't magically disappear after the holidays. The demand exists year-round for local service organizations to help the needy on a daily basis.

You can be sure that directors at a number of charitable organizations in the region are thinking today how they wished the season of giving lasted for more than just a few weeks around Christmas and Thanksgiving.

Just because we do not see that bell ringer outside the doors of a local retailer doesn't mean that the Salvation Army doesn't need our donations throughout the year. Area food banks that struggled to fill the ever-increasing demand of the holiday season now have empty shelves that need to be restocked with nonperishable items for the next wave of demand -- which starts immediately. And the need for warm clothing and blankets to get through what is shaping up to be a long, cold winter is growing.

By nature, people seem most charitable during the Christmas holiday season or following a natural disaster. But it shouldn't take a holiday or a catastrophic event to bring out the best in people. The need exists throughout the year. Please do your part and donate food, clothing, money or time to those agencies who help our neighbors.

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