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Concordia fund brings 500 smiles

File Photo — Elizabeth Pitts, a freshman at LSUA, drags a bag filled with flour, sugar and other Christmas meal essentials for the Concordia Christmas Charity Fund.

FERRIDAY — Christmas is the time of giving, and that’s exactly why the Concordia Christmas Charity Fund exists.

From 8:30 to 10:30 a.m. Friday, Dec. 21, at the Ferriday High School cafeteria, volunteers from the community service club and Concordia Parish Sheriff’s Office will distribute toys and food baskets to needy families.

“We will start organizing toys and food baskets at 2 p.m. on Dec. 20, if anyone wants to come help,” charity fund Director Rena Pitts said. “The sheriff’s office provides trusties to help unload and set up. They are a big help.”

Pitts said while volunteers are needed and appreciated, monetary donations to purchase toys and food are the first priority.

“This is funded entirely though donations,” Pitts said. “(It is) only though the generosity of the parish residents that we can do this.”

In 2011, the charity fund distributed more than 500 toys and 250 food baskets, Pitts said.

Toys are given to children between the ages of 1 to 8, and Pitts said children age 9 to 12 get gift cards.

“If it makes one child have a little more for Christmas, it’s worth it all,” Pitts said.

Pitts said the food baskets will include groceries such as flour, sugar, canned vegetables, rice, cake mix and a small ham.

Applications for assistance will be accepted though Dec. 10.

“Applications can be picked up and returned to any Tensas Bank, Concordia Bank or Delta Bank in the parish,” Pitts said. “It’s extremely important applications are filled out completely and accurately.”

An inaccurate or incomplete application, Pitts said, could prevent a family from getting any assistance.

Pitts said anyone wanting to make a donation can visit Tensas, Delta or Concordia banks where accounts have been set up for the charity fund.

“This is a very worthy cause and I know a lot of us have been blessed because of it,” Pitts said. “I feel like it’s my obligation to be involved and help people that need it and that is the attitude of the people that help with this.”

For more information, call Pitts at 318-757-2320.