Kicking off a season of giving

Falls City’s annual Thanksgiving Potluck is a beloved tradition that people in the town love to make happen.

On Saturday, the Falls City Community Center was bustling with volunteers to serve guests for the free meal. Coordinator Kristy Major said that’s what she loves about Falls City – so many people want to help bring smiles and joy to others in need.

That isn’t the only example in Polk County of people lining up to help others, and not just during the holidays. There’s the Dallas Community Foundation, M-I Community Foundation, Jinett’s Free Clothing Closet, local food banks, and new nonprofit, Thoughts & Gifts, that meet needs all year.

This year, we’ve highlighted the good work – and how people can help – in our annual Polk Gift Guide.

You also will find stories about holiday charities, like Christmas Cheer, Adopt-A-Family and Toys for Tots, that focus on giving individuals and families a happy holiday. These organizations need donations and volunteers, so please consider giving of your time and money to these worthy causes.

We’re also writing about the work of individuals in Polk County.

This week we are kicking off Community Champions, a series of stories that acknowledge the effort of people who work behind the scenes to help others. The first story “Quietly Giving” is about Julie McDonald, the Central Panthers girls’ basketball coach, who is so under the radar about what she does for others that even the people closest to her aren’t aware of all of it.

We will run a profile each week until Christmas about people from Dallas, Falls City, Monmouth and Independence who do not seek recognition, but deserve it.

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