Cheer Fund benefits children in need

Nov. 29, 2012 @ 06:15 PM

With so many charities and nonprofits in town it may be difficult to decide which one to give to during the holiday season.
Each charity supports something and someone a little different. The annual Christmas Cheer Fund, headed by Kiwanis of High Point gives gifts to about 1,500 children in need that have been identified by the Guilford County Department of Social Services.
Chris Crawford is an eligibility manager with DSS in High Point and the liaison between DSS and Kiwanis. She said recipients must get help from DSS programs including income maintenance, Medicaid or families that have a social worker.
“The family needs to be receiving some sort of assistance from us, live in High Point and have a child between the ages of one and 11,” Crawford said.
She said serving children this way helps make sure all children have gifts for the holidays.
“Foster children are usually benefiting from other organizations, but we want to give to kids that aren’t getting help anywhere else. We’re trying to fill a void.”
The fund drive was started in 1924 by The High Point Enterprise as a campaign to raise money for needy families. The initial campaign collected $848. Last year, the fund drive collected close to $34,000.
Kiwanis uses the donations to purchase gifts such as books, clothes and toys for the children on the list.
“They make up a bag of toys based on age and gender so if there’s a 10-year-old boy, he might get a basketball or trucks or books,” Crawford said.
Kiwanis is hoping to raise $40,000 this year. So far, $5,115 has been donated.