Concordia Christmas Charity gives toys, groceries to families

Published 12:00 am Wednesday, December 5, 2018


FERRIDAY — Concordia Christmas Charity has been helping Concordia Parish families have a merry Christmas since 1982.

The charity collects donations and distributes toys and groceries each Christmas season to needy families, children and senior citizens who meet certain financial qualifications.

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Applications to receive items from the charity are available at Concordia Parish branches of three banks — Concordia Bank, Delta Bank and Tensas Bank, said Rena Pitts, chair of Concordia Christmas Charity.

“We just got kicked off,” Pitts said Tuesday, “and are in the early stages of getting it going.”

The deadline to fill out applications and return them to the bank locations is 2 p.m. Dec. 14 to be considered to receive toys and groceries.

Pitts said she had printed out 150 applications to put out at the banks a few days ago and all of them were taken by Tuesday morning.

“Normally we receive about 220 applications,” Pitts said. “Some people pick them up and don’t bring them back. If we help one child or an older person get something they wouldn’t get otherwise, then it is worth it.”

Pitts said the charity averages approximately 220 applications per year, and judging by the early response this year she expects an increase in applications for assistance.

Last year, the charity helped 450 children receive toys and gift cards, including 270 families and senor citizens who received groceries through the organization.

Groceries include ham, canned goods, sugar, flour, marshmallows, rice and other staples, Pitts said.

Children up to the age of 8 or 9 receive approximately $10 worth of toys and children 10 to 12 years old receive gift cards of $10 to $20, depending on available funding, Pitts said.

“Last year, we spent over $10,000 for toys and food,” Pitts said.

The Concordia Christmas Charity is sponsored by the Rotary Club of Ferriday but anyone can make monetary or toy donations at the banks in Concordia Parish, Pitts said.

“We need a lot of money this year,” Pitts said

Toys will be distributed at 8:30 a.m. Dec. 22 at Ferriday High School cafeteria, Pitt said.