As the holiday season approaches, Utah nonprofit organizations and businesses seek help to provide goods and services they supply to the needy this time of year. Groups seeking donations of time, money and specific items include:
Warm Bodies, Warm Souls • Bank of Utah plans to warm up Utah families in need this holiday season by sponsoring its annual Warm Bodies, Warm Souls coat drive. The public is invited to donate new and gently used coats, hats, scarves, gloves, blankets and other cold-weather accessories at Bank of Utah's 18 branches and mortgage loan offices. For more information and location addresses visit http://www.bankofutah.com/news/2013/warm-bodies-warm-souls.html.
The Giving Tree • Orem's University Mall and the United Way of Utah County have created The Giving Tree, a Sub for Santa support program housed at the mall. Mall patrons are invited to visit the Giving Tree, located in Lodge Court near The Gap, and select an ornament. Each ornament represents an individual in need of help. After selecting the ornament, individuals are asked to return unwrapped gifts for the person they choose before Dec. 14 to ensure the gifts can be delivered. Visit shopuniversitymall.com for information.
Smith's Food & Drug Holiday Giving Program • Now through Dec. 28, cashiers at Smith's Food & Drug stores will ask customers to add $1, $5 or $10 to their orders. All donations will be converted to Smith's gift cards and given to Utah food banks to buy meat, grocery items, dairy or other items at Smith's cost. Visit http://www.smithsfoodanddrug.com or http://www.facebook.com/Smiths for information.
Operation Christmas Child • There are three collection sites in the Salt Lake area for Operation Christmas Child, a nonprofit organization that from Nov. 18 to 25 will collect shoeboxes filled with toys, school supplies, hygiene items and notes of encouragement to be distributed to needy children worldwide. More information about the organization is available at http://www.samaritanspurse.org. The three collection sites are Calvary Chapel, 460 W. Century Drive, Murray (hours Monday-Friday, 10 a.m. to 7 p.m.; Saturday 10 a.m. to 4 p.m.; Sunday 8 a.m. to 3 p.m., Nov. 25 10 a.m. to 8 p.m.); Hidden Valley Presbyterian Church, 12883 S. 1300 East, Draper (hours Monday, Wednesday, Friday 11 a.m. to 1 p.m.; Tuesday, Thursday 5 to 7 p.m.; Saturday 10 a.m. to 1 p.m.; Sunday 1 to 4 p.m.; Nov. 25 9 to 11 a.m.); Calvary Chapel Thrift Store, 3245 W. 7800 South, West Jordan (hours Monday-Saturday 10 a.m. to 8 p.m.).
Utah State Hospital • The hospital's Forgotten Patients Program provides Christmas gifts for patients. Each patient makes up a list of what they would like for Christmas and the sponsor purchases some or all of those items, wraps and delivers them to the hospital. Anyone interested in sponsoring a patient can contact Shawna Peterson, director of volunteer services, 801-344-4254, email@example.com. Visit http://www.ush.utah.gov/forgotten_patient.html.
Office of Public Guardian • The Utah Office of Public Guardian provides guardianship or conservatorship services to adults who are unable to make basic decisions for themselves. Most clients live in nursing or group homes and have no families. If you would like to provide simple items such as bedding, socks, slippers, sweats, gift cards, etc., for them for the holidays, call 801-538-8255.
International Refugee Committee • The committee's Light One Candle Program encourages people to adopt families for the holidays and deliver gifts Dec. 2-18 at the IRC office, 221 S. 400 West, Salt Lake City. Volunteer opportunities are available to sort and wrap gifts or distribute the gifts on Dec. 21. For information, contact Geoffrey Lugli at Geoffrey.Lugli@rescue.org or at 801-883-8457.
Businesses and organizations should send additional requests for help with goods and services to firstname.lastname@example.org.