The Hants County Christmas Angels Society is noting an increase in demand for all of their programs this holiday season.
The annual Christmas Angels Show, a telethon that raises money used to purchase Christmas presents for financially strapped families in Hants County, collected $27,500 in pledges Dec. 2.
Dexter Construction won the bidding war for the coveted Dr. Garth Vaughan Seagull Sou’Wester felt hat, and a painting donated by local artist Pauline Sullivan, with a $4,000 donation.
Christmas Angels president Leslie Porter says more families are turning to the society for help this year than usual.
She predicts about 425 children will qualify for presents purchased through The Fund, which is a program supported by the telethon.
In addition to The Fund, there are 400 gift request tags hanging on Trees of Hope in the county. The tags contain the details of a child’s Christmas wish. The society is asking the public to pull a tag off a tree, read the wish, purchase an age appropriate gift for the child and place the unwrapped present back under the tree.
There are Trees of Hope at the Scotiabank, Royal Bank and CIBC in Windsor, the Scotiabank and Credit Union in Hantsport and in various locations in Mount Uniacke.
Porter says about 12 to 15 families will benefit from the Wishbook Program, an initiative that encourages groups to get together to “give an entire family a Christmas celebration to remember.”
While the telethon fell short of the Christmas Angels Society’s fundraising goal this year, Porter says they will dip into reserve funds if necessary to ensure the families requiring their services have a merry Christmas.
“We’ll be able to provide all of our families with what they need.”
Donations of new toys for the children on the Christmas Angels Society’s wish list will also be accepted at Rose Real Estate, 630 O’Brien Street in Windsor, and Hants West MLA Chuck Porter’s office on Gerrish Street until Dec. 19.
For more information on donating, contact Christmas Angels co-ordinator Sacha Brake at (902) 798-6859.