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Christmas clearinghouse taking applications for assistance

October 16, 2009

The Eastern Panhandle Christmas Clearinghouse, which serves Berkeley and Jefferson counties, is now accepting applications for assistance for the holiday season. Individuals and families who have not already applied for food, clothes, toys or gifts at a local organization are invited to complete an application. For a list of application sites and instructions about what information and documentation is needed, call the Christmas Clearinghouse at 304-267-0100, ext. 222. 

The purpose of the Christmas Clearinghouse is to coordinate Christmas giving so as many people as possible are served and duplication is limited. The project is spearheaded by the Eastern Panhandle Health and Human Services Collaborative, a partnership of numerous organizations and individuals, and facilitated by the United Way of the Eastern Panhandle.

All applications are reviewed to:

o make every effort to meet the identified need through referrals to organizations, businesses or individual donors

o determine if applicants have applied for assistance from more than one Christmas giving program or organization

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o coordinate with participating organizations to determine which organization will provide the service.

Holiday season 2009 will mark the second year of operation for the Christmas Clearinghouse. Those involved are hoping to expand the number of participating organizations.

Organizations may participate by either serving as an application site for the general public or for their clients. Organizations that provide Christmas donations are encouraged to share data about who they serve with the Christmas Clearinghouse.

Organizations, churches, service clubs, businesses, families and individuals are asked to contact the Christmas Clearinghouse about what they can do to help by either making donations or by volunteering.

For more information about the Christmas Clearinghouse, contact Trina Bartlett at 304-263-0603, ext. 224, or uwepdci@comcast.net.

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