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Editorial

Holiday season for giving and sharing

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December 11, 2008

It’s beginning to look a lot like Christmas. There are toys in every store, and candy canes and silver lanes aglow. But perhaps the prettiest sight to see these days is not holly on your own front door, but the generosity people show-or are supposed to show-during this special time of year.

Many of us will have food to eat, shelter from the cold, and a decent number of presents to open this Christmas. But this holiday is about more than just food, shelter, family and presents; it’s also about their absence. People may not have all those things should have our attention too, and there are several organizations right here on campus that will be accepting donations for those less fortunate.

First, there is a new United Way chapter on campus that will be placing boxes in the Residence Halls during finals week to collect canned goods and clothing. Even your average poor college student can probably spare a few cans of soup or a few items of clothing they never wear anymore.

The Sociology, Anthropology, and Criminal Justice Club (SACJ) has placed boxes of its own in the academic buildings. The club is focusing on the needs of the community, with all donations going through a community shelter to local families. Items they need the most include clothes, shoes, blankets, and toys for young children and teenagers.

Sodexo, UWRF’s food service provider, will also be doing its part through the end of finals week. Their table in the commons area of the University Center will take anything non-perishable and non-breakable. The food will go to the River Falls Food Pantry. Sodexo has only been serving the campus since May, but they’re wasting no time trying to help out the community.

The Salvation Army will have volunteers outside local businesses ringing their charity bell. It’s a truly mystery how these people can stand out in the cold all day for the sake of low-income families; we can at least offer them a few coins or dollar bills for their trouble.

If you live off-campus and are heading home for the holidays, your own community is almost certain to have donation areas and food shelves of its own. So if you don’t donate here, at least you can give something there.

Christmas is a time for enjoying ourselves, and appreciating the things we have. But there are plenty of have-nots around too, so don’t be a scrooge this year.