image description

Northern Berkshire Santa Fund Changes Focus

Print Story | Email Story

NORTH ADAMS, Mass. —The Northern Berkshire Santa Fund will be changing its focus from toys to coats this year.

The change is part of a new initiative to look at the year-round needs of the Northern Berkshire community, according to Santa Fund President Tammy Daniels.
 
"The Santa Fund has been solidifying ties with other community agencies over the last few years in an effort to sustain the program, which has a long history dating back to the days of Sprague Electric of providing toys for children in the community during the holidays,” Daniels said. “We saw that other programs were providing toys but there was a gap in other items, so when we were asked to consider providing coats in October when children need them, we were excited about the opportunity.”

Daniels and other staff at iBerkshires.com took over operation of the Santa Fund several years ago after the closure of the North Adams Transcript, which had run the program for many years. Santa Fund organizers worked with the North Adams WalMart for a couple years; while Wal-Mart was extremely generous with its time and money in helping with the transition, the logistics were difficult for a small, volunteer organization. More recently, Santa Fund volunteers had purchased and distributed toys to families at the holidays.

But now, starting this year, the Santa Fund will focus on distributing warm winter coats at the end of October, before the cold weather really sets in. This is a partnership with Northern Berkshire United Way, Berkshire Community Action Council and the Rotary Club of North Adams.



The program will work with Operation Warm, a national organization that creates its own line of brand new winter coats. Operation Warm partners with organizations across North America to give coats to children in need. The partnership with the North Adams Rotary Club gives the Santa Fund added benefits and funding as well as additional program and administrative support.

But what about the toys? The Elf Program at Berkshire Community Action Council generally provides toys with their warm winter clothing distributed in December. This program serves 800 eligible children in Northern Berkshire while the Santa Fund typically served 500. All toys currently stored with the Santa Fund will be given to Berkshire Community Action Council for their Elf program this year.

The Santa Fund also will develop a list of other needs it wants to support throughout the year, particularly in the summer. These needs are still being developed and will evolve over time, as do community issues.

If anyone in the community would like to contribute to the Operation Warm Coat Fund, the cost to serve one child and provide one coat is $20. Donations can be made securely online. However, because this is a transition year, the fund will only be able to take in a limited number of applications and the due date is Sept. 27. The goal this year is to serve 300 children and increase that number next year. For more information or to apply, contact BCAC at 413-663-3014.


Tags: santa fund,   

0 Comments
iBerkshires.com welcomes critical, respectful dialogue; please keep comments focused on the issues and not on personalities. Profanity, obscenity, racist language and harassment are not allowed. iBerkshires reserves the right to ban commenters or remove commenting on any article at any time. Concerns may be sent to info@iberkshires.com.

MCLA Women Drop Narrow Decision on Senior Day

NORTH ADAMS, Mass. -- Worcester State's Mya Mosley scored a game best 29 points and the visiting Lancers rallied from a halftime deficit to earn a hard fought 68-64 win over MCLA in women's basketball action in the Amsler Campus Center Gym.
 
MCLA (2-20, 0-11 MASCAC) led 15-13 after one quarter of play and eventually took a 35-29 lead into halftime behind Erika Ryan' 11 first half points. Worcester State (15-8, 6-4) took charge in the third quarter however as they outscored MCLA 26-13 in the period and took a 55-48 lead into the home fourth quarter. MCLA did not go quietly however as the game would come down to the wire.
 
With five minutes remaining, Worcester still led 65-54. From there, MCLA chipped away at the lead as they held the Lancers without a point for nearly four minutes. The Trailblazers went on an 10-1 spurt to close within two at 66-64 after a pair of Kylah Langston FT's with just seven seconds left to play. Forced to foul, MCLA sent Worcester's Mosley to the line. She calmly drained both shots to increase the lead back to four points and secure the win for the Lancers.
 
Mosley was outstanding scoring 19 of her 29 points in the closing half of play. She went 11-21 from the floor in the win. Gigi LeMay was the only other Lancer in double figures with 10 points off the bench. She completed the double double with 14 rebounds.  Catherine Sweeney ended with 8 points but had 11 rebounds and 4 assists.  
View Full Story

More North Adams Stories