There is no shortage of people in the Attleboro area eager to brighten the holidays of those in need, and also celebrate the season in the spirit of community. Here is some of what’s going on:
Self Help launches toy and food drive
Self Help, Inc., a non-profit that provides community action programs to serve families, individuals, and communities across southeastern Massachusetts, has launched the organization’s third annual toy and food drive.
The program, “Holiday Joy for Every Girl & Boy,” provides toys for low-income and disadvantaged children as well as helping assure families trying to overcome severe financial difficulties don’t have to go hungry during the holidays.
Through Wednesday, Dec. 11, the organization is asking individuals, companies, and other groups to donate packaged but unwrapped toys for both boys and girls ages 3 to 6 at the donation centers they have set up.
They include Self Help Fuel Assistance Program, 95 Pine St., Attleboro, and Norton Head Start, 77 East Main St. (Route 123), Norton.
Cash donations are also being accepted to buy toys and food gift cards. For monetary donations, visit selfhelpinc.org/holidays and click on the donate button.
Mansfield group sending Santa letters
MANSFIELD — The Mansfield Women of Today are sending personalized letters from Santa to children, neighbors, college students, even grandparents.
Email mansfield.wot@gmail or contact Diane at 508-269-0154 for additional information.
A $5 donation, along with a completed form, need to be postmarked by Friday, Dec. 6 and mailed to: Santa Claus, c/o Mansfield Women of Today, P.O. Box 285, Mansfield, MA 02048.
The personalized letter should be delivered by about Dec. 18. Donations will be used toward community service projects and events run by Mansfield Women of Today throughout the year, as well as supporting various local charities and causes.
Toy drive in memory of Attleboro resident
ATTLEBORO — Unwrapped toys are being collected from 1 to 4 p.m. Saturday, Dec. 7 at the Barn Food & Spirits at 1395 Commerce Way for the Christmas Is For Kids toy drive, in memory of late Attleboro resident Tammy Tondreau.
Tondreau, who passed away last December, lived in Attleboro her whole life and was a nurse at the Attleboro VNA.
Foxboro library hosts Giving Tree
FOXBORO — Once again, the Friends of Boyden Library and the library are supporting the Foxboro Discretionary Fund with a Giving Tree in the main lobby.
The Giving Tree is being adorned with tags. Each tag lists a gift requested by a child in Foxboro. Select one or more tags, purchase the requested gift, and return the unwrapped gift with the tag attached by Monday, Dec. 9. Gifts can be placed in the container by the tree.
The children’s department is also having its Annual Book Drive for the Foxboro Discretionary Fund. Bring a new, unwrapped book for a child up to 12 years old. Books can be left in the container by the Giving Tree or brought to the Children’s Department.
Community VNA tree lighting Dec. 8
ATTLEBORO — Community VNA Hospice and Palliative Care will host its annual tree lighting at 2 p.m. Sunday, Dec. 8, at Community VNA, 10 Emory St.
The ceremony offers a chance to gather to honor and remember loved ones. It’s free and open to the public with a reception following.
The community can also participate by making a donation to Community VNA Hospice and Palliative Care. When you make a gift, the name of your loved one will be added to a silver star on its Tree of Life and Remembrance during the lighting ceremony.
Donations support the care given by the Hospice and Palliative Care interdisciplinary team of nurses, social workers, spiritual care coordinator and volunteers.
Donations may be made during the ceremony or online at www.communityvna.com/donate. You may also mail a check payable to Community VNA, Development Office, 10 Emory Street, Attleboro, MA 02703.
Gingerbread house contest in Wrentham
WRENTHAM — The Wrentham Cultural Council is sponsoring a Gingerbread House Contest from 1 to 4 p.m. Sunday, Dec. 8 at the Old Fiske Museum and Gallery at 55 East St. (Route 140), near the town common.
All ages are invited to enter a gingerbread house or structure, and the three most popular creations will receive prizes. Participants may drop off gingerbread houses at the museum Saturday, Dec. 7 from 1 to 3 p.m. or Sunday, Dec. 8 from noon to 1 p.m.
The Historic Commission Gallery will also be open during the event and holiday decorating is being provided by the Sohoanno Garden Club.
Help support Foxboro Christmas giving program
FOXBORO — The Foxboro Discretionary Fund again welcomes assistance for its Christmas giving program, aimed at helping local families and individuals in need during the holiday season.
Families in need of holiday assistance have submitted application queries about their children’s ages, interests, Christmas wishes, etc. This information is being relayed to local sponsors — businesses, families, individuals and organizations — who agree to spend $75 on gifts for that child.
Recipients remain anonymous. Anyone still in need during the holidays or interested in sponsoring a child should contact Lisa Downs at 508-930-1520 or Lori McDonald at 508-989-6680.
Gifts should be delivered, unwrapped, to Lori McDonald at 3 Meadowview Road by Saturday, Dec. 11. Gifts will be matched up with winter outerwear purchased by parishioners at St. Mary’s Church.
Each recipient family also will receive a Christmas food basket, which are being assembled at 10 a.m. Saturday, Dec. 14 at St. Mark’s Episcopal Church, South Street. Volunteers are welcome to participate in this community tradition.
Christmas deliveries of both food and gifts will be at 6 p.m. Friday, Dec. 20, also from St. Mark’s Church. Adult volunteers are welcome to assist in making deliveries, however, it will be necessary for volunteers to arrive in pairs. One person will be responsible for paperwork and the second will wait in a vehicle queue for pickup.
Santa coming to Norfolk
NORFOLK — Santa Claus will roll into Norfolk Sunday, Dec. 8 and a host of groups will turn out to celebrate his arrival with a variety of activities.
Santa and his entourage will be ushered into town by the King Philip Regional High School Marching Band. Prior to the parade, Santa stops in at Hillcrest Village off Rockwood Road (Route 115) to hand out cookies and treats to the seniors living there.
Santa’s parade will begin at 3:30 p.m. at Hillcrest Village. Santa’s elves, Frosty the Snowman, the Grinch, Norfolk Police and Fire departments, area Scouts, and others will join Santa along Rockwood Road through the center of town, turning right onto Liberty Lane and ending at the Norfolk library.
At 4 p.m., residents are invited to visit with Santa at the library and have their pictures taken. Refreshments will be provided by Norfolk Recreation.
Children are invited to bring their homemade ornaments to help adults decorate the town Christmas tree, which will be lit on Town Hill.
Mansfield business helping Toys for Tots
MANSFIELD — The Strand Salon & Spa at 272 Chauncy St. (Route 106), Suite 2, is collecting for Toys for Tots this month.
Bring a new, unwrapped toy and enter in a raffle for five gift baskets. Win a Bioelements gift basket valued at $200.