Miss A Columnist

Adrienne Birden is a 22 year Monterey Peninsula native. A current college student and also a recent graduate of the U.S Career Institute’s Wedding & Event Planning program, she is an aspiring writer that is convinced that she chose Wedding and Event planning but that writing chose her. She is currently in the middle of bringing to life her debut novel. If you have a San Francisco charity or cultural event, restaurant, boutique, spa, or salon you would like covered on Miss A, please contact Adrienne at adrienne.birden@gmail.com.

Giving The Gift Of Charity In Monterey

During a season of giving, the best thing that you can give yourself – and others – is your time and your smile. In a time of economic crisis and heartache, nonprofit organizations all over are looking for volunteers to help spread a little extra holiday cheer. Traveling to or near Monterey this year for the holidays? There are plenty of opportunities to donate the most precious gift you already have in your possession – selflessness. Across Monterey County, the holiday season weighs heavy on the mind of parents. Where will the toys come from this year? Where can I take my family to have a hot meal on Christmas Day? With your help, these families won’t have to worry.

Kids in need receiving their gifts from the Salvation Army (Photo Credit: usc.salvationarmy.org)

Sponsored by the Crime Prevention Officer’s Association of Monterey County, there are toy drop offs located at various locations such as: Walgreens in both Seaside and Monterey; and also at the Marina, Monterey, Seaside, and Presidio of Monterey Police departments. Want to go a step further with helping a family? The Salvation Army of the Monterey Peninsula hosts a program Adopt-a-Family. Adopt-A-Family is a program that allows donors to fill a selected family with holiday cheer – including presents a Christmas dinner! Contact the Salvation Army at 831-899-4911 for more information on this great program.

Aside from the wonderful Adopt-A-Family program, you can also donate toys and food at the Salvation Army located at 1491 Contra Costa Street in Seaside. During this season, Santa also needs helping wrapping presents! You can help wrap presents for local families at the Boys and Girls Club of Monterey County located in Seaside! Contact them at 831-394-5171 to sign up today! Their wrapping program lasts from December 5 to 22. The Boys and Girls Club also hosts their own Adopt-a-Family program, contact them via email (khemmings@bgcmc.org) for more information about how to get involved with their also very worthy cause. In Monterey, there is a very unique cause that is beyond worth mentioning. Shoreline Community Church has partnered with Angel Tree in collecting and distributing toys to children who have a parent that is incarcerated. Contact Shoreline Community Church at 831-655-0100 for more information on how to become someone else’s angel.

What’s a better way to spend Christmas Day than to spread good cheer to your fellow man (and woman)? On December 25, The Monterey County Fairgrounds hosts a free community dinner from 12 to 3 p.m. Contact Shirley at (831) 384-7193 to sign up to volunteer your time.

Angel Tree for underprivileged children (Photo Credit: ufv.ca)

Listed above are just a few ideas for ways of how you can get involved in Monterey and the surrounding community this holiday season. Don’t forget to check Monterey County Weekly and Volunteer Match for more opportunities. And don’t forget readers – this is the season of giving; so please give an hour or afternoon of your time. You nor the people you will be helping will ever regret or forget it. Happy Holidays, readers!

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