As we approach the Thanksgiving holiday next week and begin reflecting on the bounty in our lives, let's not forget those less fortunate who need our help.
If you haven't already given to the United Way of the Lowcountry's annual campaign, please consider doing so.
The United Way's fundraising goal of $2.8 million is based on the organization's broad-based assessment of the community's needs and the work of the 44 agencies and programs it supports in Beaufort and Jasper counties.
As of Thursday, 56 percent -- or $1.6 million -- had been raised, a remarkable achievement, but we can do more.
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Donations last year came tantalizingly close to reaching the same ambitious goal. More than $2.7 million was contributed by this relatively small two-county area. It is a tribute to the giving spirit that permeates so much of our community.
Thanksgiving also signals that Christmas is just around the corner. United Way also has launched its annual Operation Holiday Heroes, a countywide collaboration that includes Toys for Tots, Bluffton Self Help, The Deep Well Project, the Salvation Army and Love House Ministries. Its mission is to make sure every child and family in need has toys and food for the holidays.
Donors can adopt a child for Christmas, businesses can ask employees to bring in an unwrapped gift, and civic organizations can donate cash.
To contribute money to purchase toys and food vouchers, send a check made payable to Operation Holiday Heroes to United Way of the Lowcountry, P.O. Box 202, Beaufort, SC 29901. Donations of money also can be dropped at the United Way office at 2266 Boundary St. in Beaufort.
To contribute new, unwrapped toys, go to www.toysfortots.org for a comprehensive list of official drop-off locations.
Every gift, no matter how big or small, makes a difference.