Helping Others

Love animals? Want to make sure kids in need have Christmas gifts? There’s a local charity for that.

Santa brings joy and big stuffed animals to students in East St. Louis

FW Logistics helped Santa deliver over 4,100 stuffed animals to students in the East St. Louis School district. Vivian Adams Early Childhood Center was Santa's first stop.
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FW Logistics helped Santa deliver over 4,100 stuffed animals to students in the East St. Louis School district. Vivian Adams Early Childhood Center was Santa's first stop.

If you want your charitable donation to benefit metro-east communities, there are many locally-run nonprofits to choose from.

The Belleville News-Democrat annually features those charities during the holiday season.

Our list will be updated with new charities, which have been recognized as tax-exempt by the IRS, until Christmas. If you would like to have your organization included in the list, send an email to Lexi Cortes at acortes@bnd.com.

Here’s what the charities had to say about what they do and how your donation would help:

Alton

Riverbend Head Start and Family Services

What does your charity do? Riverbend Head Start and Family Services educates children, empowers parents and strengthens families by connecting them with resources and developing positive skills to help them meet life’s challenges.

How can people help? Individuals and corporations can help by making a unrestricted donation to help fund the greatest area of need or by volunteering their time, services and skills.

Why should people give to your charity? When people give to Riverbend Head Start and Family Services, 85 cents or more from every dollar donated to the agency goes toward funding the greatest area of need in our programs, which in turn strengthens families and improves the overall communities in Madison County, Illinois. Unrestricted gifts from individuals and corporations help us offer quality education to at-risk children, while helping their families develop life skills and providing them the tools to access community resources that help reverse the effects of poverty.

Mailing address: 550 Landmarks Blvd., Alton, IL 62002

Phone number: 618-463-5946

Website: riverbendfamilies.org

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Belleville

Belleville Area Humane Society

What does your charity do? The Belleville Area Humane Society strives to improve the lives of homeless animals in our community through adoption, humane education and community outreach.

How can people help? Please visit our website to learn ways to give or to volunteer your time. Stop by and see us. We’d love to meet you.

Why should people give to your charity? The BAHS has been serving the Belleville community for nearly 60 years. We work hard to keep people and pets together. We wish our services weren’t needed but do our best to help pets and people in need. Thank you for considering supporting our mission.

Mailing address: 1301 S. 11th Street Belleville, IL 62226

Phone number: 618-235-3712

Website: bahspets.org

Belleville Kiwanis Charities Foundation

What does your charity do? The Belleville Kiwanis believe in putting kids first. We partner with school nurses and social workers to ensure kids in need have shoes for school. We helped TWIGS serve over 170 lunches to kids during summer vacation. We sponsor leadership programs for high school students. A scholarship at Southwestern Illinois College is funded annually by our group. Our group serves as a charter organization for a Cub Scout pack, prepares dinner for families staying at Ronald McDonald House and much more.

How can people help? Our group welcomes volunteers. We are not by invitation only. Age, occupation, religion and political preferences are irrelevant with the Belleville Kiwanis. We do like people who like to have fun while helping the kids in our community.

Volunteers are welcome at any of our projects, especially at our Christmas tree lot and electronics recycling events. We are in the very initial planning phase of an early 2019 special event that will help a group of kids with special needs that should be super rewarding. We know our volunteers and members can’t make every event or attend every meeting but are still able to assist remotely.

Donations are also accepted. Supporters can also come purchase a fresh wreath or Christmas tree or bring electronics and other electrical items to recycle.

Why should people give to your charity? People should know that their donations benefit kids in the greater Belleville area. Although our group was established in 1948, we understand that our community and the needs of the kids are changing. We welcome ideas, suggestions and information about need in our area that is not being addressed. Supporters are welcome to attend our meetings and to contact us with questions or concerns.

Mailing address: P.O. Box 153, Belleville, IL 62222

Website: belleville-il-kiwanis.org

Whether it's for a birthday or Giving Tuesday, giving a gift to someone can feel great. It turns out there's a reason for that, and it starts with your brain.

Big Brothers Big Sisters of Southwestern Illinois

What does your charity do? We partner with parents, guardians, volunteers, schools and others in the community to provide match support for youth facing adversity. We hold ourselves accountable for the safety of each child in our program achieving: higher aspirations, greater confidence, better relationships, avoidance of risky behaviors and educational success.

How can people help? Donate and/or volunteer.

Why should people give to your charity? All children deserve the time and attention to help them achieve success in life. By giving to Big Brothers Big Sisters of Southwestern Illinois, people are defending potential.

Mailing address: 2726 Frank Scott Parkway West, Belleville, IL 62223

Phone number: 618-398-3162

Website: bbbsil.org

Caritas Family Solutions

What does your charity do? Founded in 1947, Caritas Family Solutions is a premier child welfare and family services agency promoting social and emotional well-being throughout Southern Illinois. Services include pregnancy care, adoption, foster care, counseling, independent living for adults with developmental disabilities, employment assistance for low-income seniors and residential therapy for children healing from the trauma of severe abuse and/or neglect. Learn more at caritasfamilysolutions.org.

How can people help? Caritas currently serves more than 330 children in foster care throughout the Belleville region (1,310 overall), with children entering care any day of the year. While holiday gifts are appreciated, the needs are basic and exist year round. Become a Secret Santa Year Round with a monetary gift that provides the flexibility to meet these needs as they arise. Gifts can be made online at caritasfamilysolutions.org/ssyearround or mailed to Caritas Family Solutions, 8601 W. Main St., Suite 200, Belleville, IL 62223. Contact Samantha Lappe for questions about Secret Santa Year Round at 618-213-8717 or sam.lappe@caritasfamily.org. Volunteers are needed for a variety of projects, including tutoring and special events. For volunteer opportunities, visit caritasfamilysolutions.org/volunteer or contact Kate Williams at 618-213-8716 or kaitlin.williams@caritasfamily.org.

Why should people give to your charity? Social and emotional well-being is a critical component of healthy families and strong communities. Support for services provided by Caritas Family Solutions is an investment in strengthening our society by helping people of all ages to reach their full potential. Every day, our professional staff assists individuals, families, parents and caregivers to create loving, stable environments that provide a solid foundation for those in need.

Mailing address: 8601 W. Main St., Suite 201, Belleville, IL 62223

Phone number: 618-213-8700

Website: caritasfamilysolutions.org

Children’s Dyslexia Center – Southern Illinois

What does your charity do? Dyslexia is estimated to affect over 2 million children in the United States. These children typically have average or above average intelligence. However, if their dyslexia causes academic problems, it can lead to emotional and self-esteem issues throughout their lives. Since 2002, the Southern Illinois Center has been providing tutoring to children, by highly educated tutors, free of charge. Specialized training in the Orton-Gillingham method has also been provided free of charge. Learn more about how the Children’s Dyslexia Center – Southern Illinois has impacted the lives of children in your community by visiting readwithdyslexia.com.

How can people help? You can:

Attend or volunteer to work fundraising events. The only way our fundraisers can be successful is with your help. We can plan the best fundraisers, but if we don’t have anyone show up, or if we don’t have enough people working the event, they will not be successful.

Donate office supplies.

Use Schnucks E-Script. If you shop for groceries at Schnucks stores, pick up an E-Script card, register it and let the cashier scan it. A portion of your purchase will be donated to the center. Just register the card with the Children’s Dyslexia Center – Southern Illinois or the Masonic Learning Center of Belleville.

Give the gift of reading. What do you give to someone who has everything? You can give the gift of reading by making a donation to the center. Visit readwithdyslexia.com/sponsor_a_child to donate online and to find out how to make donations by mail.

Over 90 percent of sponsorship income goes directly to providing tutoring-related services for children with dyslexia. You can be confident your commitment is going where it should go — to the children who need it most.

Why should people give to your charity? Donations to support the Children’s Dyslexia Center – Southern Illinois are greatly needed and appreciated. The free one-to-one individualized tutoring for each child is estimated to cost our center approximately $5,000 per child per year. Your donation to our 501c3 nonprofit center will be acknowledged with a letter of appreciation for your tax records. We have numerous fundraisers throughout the year. These include a walk-a-thon, vendor craft fair event in the winter, Glo Bingo nights, Ladies Luncheon and many others. You can attend and contribute via these events. Yearlong calendar of events for 2018-2019 are located here: readwithdyslexia.com/calendar.

Mailing address: P.O. Box 23954 Belleville, IL 62223

Phone number: 618-235-9392

Website: readwithdyslexia.com

Epilepsy Foundation of Greater Southern Illinois

What does your charity do? Since 1977, the Epilepsy Foundation of Greater Southern Illinois (EFGSI) has been providing a full spectrum of comprehensive services (such as residential facilities, monthly support groups, summer camp for children, comprehensive case management services, seizure first aid training, emergency medication assistance, etc.) for people whose lives have been affected by epilepsy.

How can people help? Monetary and/or in-kind donations of food, household supplies, gift cards are accepted and appreciated throughout the year. There are many volunteer opportunities such as office work, special events (annual walk, annual gala) and summer camp counselors. All donations go directly toward helping individuals facing the struggles of living with epilepsy.

Why should people give to your charity? The Epilepsy Foundation of Greater Southern Illinois has been serving southern Illinois since 1977. In fiscal year 2018 alone, 129,261 individuals received some form of epilepsy education, information and coordination services. All donations to the Epilepsy Foundation remain locally to help individuals living in your community.

Mailing address: 3515 North Belt West, Belleville, IL 62226

Phone number: 618-236-2181

Website: efgreatersil.org

Family Hospice and Heartlinks Grief Center

What does your charity do? Family Hospice helps terminally ill patients and their caregivers/families with care for their physical, emotional and spiritual needs. In addition to those basic needs, we offer an extensive bereavement program in our Heartlinks Grief Center.

How can people help? Donations and volunteers accepted. You can also support our annual Tree of Memories campaign with the purchase of a Remembrance Angel ornament, various smaller ornaments, or through a donation.

Why should people give to your charity? We are a small non-profit hospice agency located in Belleville and serve communities in our surrounding counties of St. Clair, Monroe, Madison, Randolph, Clinton and Washington. In addition to hospice and grief care, we also provide services such as music therapy, pet therapy, physical/speech/occupational therapies, veteran services, homemaker and other volunteer services.

Mailing address: 5110 W. Main Street, Belleville, IL 62226

Phone number: 618-277-1800

Website: familyhospice.org and myheartlinks.com

Hands to Help

What does your charity do? Hands to Help provides free massage therapy for terminal, elderly and disabled people and full-time caregivers.

How can people help? Donate. Right now, we can afford to give our patients six free visits, and then after that, it’s $30 a visit. The majority of the money that is donated to us goes directly to the patient care. The therapists get paid $25 a visit, plus mileage one way. Volunteers to plan fundraising events or apply for grant money for Hands to Help are also welcomed.

Hands to Help, provides free massage therapy to people who have terminal illnesses, as well as elderly and disabled people and their caregivers. They need volunteer board members and help fundraising.

Why should people give to your charity? The people that we serve are a forgotten population. So many of our patients are so lonely. They never get out of the house. They don’t see anybody. Their families aren’t around. And that hour a week of just conversation and some love, it makes a huge difference even if there’s not physical pain.

Mailing address: P.O. Box 797, Belleville, IL 62220

Phone number: 618-235-8853

Website: handstohelpnfp.org

Hospice of Southern Illinois

What does your charity do? The mission of Hospice of Southern Illinois is to enhance the quality of life for individuals and their loved ones touched by a terminal illness.

Hospice of Southern Illinois provides specialized care services for patients and families who are faced with a terminal illness. Our focus is on patient care including symptom management, emotional support, spiritual support and psychosocial intervention.

Our approach is multi-disciplinary and includes the area’s only full-time physician, pharmacist, nurse practitioner, nurses, hospice aides, social workers, bereavement counselors and volunteers who, together, form a support team around each patient. We address issues most important to the patients’ wants and needs at the end of their life while focusing on improving the individual’s quality of life.

How can people help? Give back. Get involved. Make a difference to other families facing end-of-life issues. Learn various ways to support Hospice of Southern Illinois including tax-deductible donations, personal financial commitments, attend entertaining events, attend educational evenings, become a volunteer and/or join our dedicated team of healthcare professionals.

Why should people give to your charity? As a not-for-profit organization, we rely on community support to enhance the programs and services we provide to terminally ill patients and their families. Fundraisers and community support allows us to continue to provide the highest quality end-of-life care and contributes to some specialty programs we offer: the We Honor Veterans program, our volunteer programs and the pet therapy program.

Mailing address: 305 S. Illinois St., Belleville, IL 62220

Phone number: 618-235-1703

Website: hospice.org

MindsEye

What does your charity do? MindsEye translates vision into audio. Our radio reading service has a long and proud tradition of excellence. In fact, MindsEye was the third such service in the country and the first to operate in either Illinois or Missouri. We began our service under the leadership of Father Boniface Wittenbrink, OMI (Oblate of Mary Immaculate) on March 1, 1973. MindsEye has grown exponentially since then. To date, we have over 13,000 listeners and broadcast our signal into over 80 nursing homes, retirement centers and hospitals in the area. We began offering Audio Description in the fall of 2016 and have been able to connect with theatre companies like The Muny, The Rep, Stray Dog Theatre and organizations like The Missouri History Museum and Delta Gamma Center to create a more accessible community. Our hope is that MindsEye will continue to grow and develop indefinitely. Annually, we throw a Beepball tournament in July, and we recently added Beepball as a year-round program to take into the public schools and universities to bring awareness to students, teachers and staff. Beepball is best described as blindfolded baseball and is a hoot to play.

Beep Baseball is baseball for people with visual impairments. Anthony Easley of East St. Louis, who is blind, is one of the best players in the area. He was recently named most valuable player at a tournament in St. Louis.

How can people help? Donate. Become a monthly donor or support MindsEye through sponsoring and attending events like our annual Soiree pour la Vue in February. MindsEye is possible through the support of our community and through our amazing volunteers. The time that one spends volunteering at MindsEye is invaluable to the success and growth of our organization and serves to strengthen the community in more ways than any of us can realize. The opportunities to volunteer are varied and endless. Beyond the Radio Reading Service and Audio Description Program, we present several special events throughout the year, including: MindsEye Trivia Night, our annual Soiree pour la Vue, the No Run, Beer Run, and the Ultimate Beepball Tournament in the summer. You can learn more about our organization at mindseyeradio.org.

Why should people give to your charity? MindsEye is the only service of its kind in our region. By supporting MindsEye, you are supporting access to the news and entertainment individuals with visual-impairments would not be able to access otherwise. And through our Audio Description Program, you are not only providing access to the arts, you’re also committing to building a diverse, vibrant and inclusive community. MindsEye’s audio description means that every person who attends a theater production or exhibit, regardless of visual-impairment, has the chance to enjoy a rewarding experience.

Mailing address: 9541 Church Circle Drive, Belleville, IL 62223

Phone number: 618-394-6444

Website: mindseyeradio.org

Optimist Club of Belleville Foundation

What does your charity do? The primary functions of the Optimist Club of Belleville Foundation is to help in the encouragement and development of youth and to develop optimism as a way of life.

How can people help? The Optimist Club is always looking for new members to help with our mission. We will graciously accept all donations. Our club donations and projects total over $50,000 annually. It is estimated that during our club’s existence over $2 million has been contributed and spent toward youth and community improvements. It would be an almost impossible task to evaluate the number of Optimist volunteer hours that have gone into making our club’s efforts successful.

Why should people give to your charity? So many youth in our area are in need of support. As an organization we support many youth activities and community service including the following:

Christmas food drive

Santa’s House

Childhood Cancer Campaign

College scholarship fund

Junior Optimist Golf Tournament

Big Brothers Big Sisters summer picnic

Mailing address: P.O. Box 636, Belleville, IL 62222

Phone number: 618-806-5145

Website: bellevilleoptimist.org

Parent Teacher Organization for Exceptional Children

What does your charity do? Provides sport, recreation and social opportunities for individuals with intellectual disabilities throughout the metro-east.

How can people help? Our primary needs are for donations to support ongoing operations and for coaches and assistant coaches interested in helping with Special Olympics sports activities.

Why should people give to your charity? PTOEC is a community of amazing people working together to support individuals with intellectual disabilities.

Mailing address: P.O. Box 23424, Belleville, IL 62223-0424

Website: ptoec.org

Project Compassion

What does your charity do? Project Compassion empowers, enhances and educates homeless and low-income women and children, offering empowerment and self-esteem programs to youth in high school and middle schools.

How can people help? Project Compassion accepts the following:

Monetary donations (Checks made payable to Project Compassion or through projectcompassionnfp.org)

Hygiene product donations (soap, single toothbrushes, toothpaste, deodorant, wash cloths and diapers)

New socks

New or gently used blankets

Volunteers are welcomed Monday-Friday

Why should people give to your charity? Project Compassion has proudly served the community without any state or federal assistance. We’ve served over 80,000 homeless and low-income men, women and youth. We offer a free diaper bank to our community.

Mailing address: 6609 W. Main St., Bellevile, IL 62223

Phone number: 618-397-1790

Website: projectcompassionnfp.org

Senior Companion Program

What does your charity do? Senior Companions are older adults who provide companionship and assistance to their peers who are homebound or socially isolated. Senior Companions also assist with daily tasks and provide a much needed break to full-time caregivers.

This program brings seniors together with other seniors. The companions provide supportive, individualized services to help clients maintain their dignity and independence. The goal is to keep clients independent and in their own homes.

Senior Companions come a minimum of four hours per day. There is no cost to the family or the client. The days are arranged to meet the needs of the family and client. Although they might begin as strangers, these seniors quickly become friends.

How can people help? Millions of Americans who have worked all their lives look forward to the day when they can retire and enjoy their leisure time only to find themselves bored and restless now that the time has finally come. Volunteerism as a great way of enriching their life while, at the same time, providing assistance and support to others in need.

Consider becoming a Senior Companion volunteer. Companions must be 55 years old or older, meet certain income guidelines and volunteer a minimum of 20 hours per week. Companions receive a small stipend, paid time off, travel and meal reimbursement and an annual physical as part of their benefits. The stipend cannot be counted as income and will not interfere or count against any other benefits the individual receives.

Why should people give to your charity? The Corporation for National and Community Service (CNCS) knows that service works, which is why they are committed to improving lives, strengthening communities and fostering civic engagement through service and volunteering. Volunteering spreads smiles to both the Senior Companion and those in need of assistance. Being of service has a multitude of benefits for wellbeing and provides goodwill to the individuals in the communities served. New data from the first year of the CNCS impact study shows Senior Companion volunteers report improved health after just one year of service. Volunteers reported decreased anxiety and depression, decreased loneliness and social isolation, enhanced physical capacity and higher life satisfaction. Help others and yourself by becoming a Senior Companion.

Mailing address: 201 N. Church St., Belleville, IL 62220

Phone number: 618-234-4410 ext. 7040 or ext. 7036

Website: swic.edu/community/senior-programs/psop/programs

Soup & Raisins Program

What does your charity do? The Soup & Raisins Program provides basic meals to students at Southwestern Illinois College who are struggling. Free ramen noodles, raisins, apple sauce and crackers are available through the SWIC Success Center for students in need. An average of 300 meals are given out each week.

How can people help? While SWIC employees can donate through payroll deduction, monetary donations are graciously accepted through the SWIC Foundation. Please designate in the memo line that the donation is for the Soup & Raisins Program. Donations of ramen noodles (in cups), raisins, apple sauce and crackers are appreciated as well.

Why should people give to your charity? SWIC students are often on their own after having a safety net in high school — free or reduced lunches are no longer provided. Child care issues, unreliable transportation, unexpected illness and underemployment plague many of our students. Some students end up homeless or living in their car just trying to get through the semester. Other students find themselves in a financial crisis with a choice between paying for a textbook or paying their rent. We are trying to eliminate hunger from their list of concerns.

Mailing address: 2500 Carlyle Ave., Belleville, IL 62221

Phone number: 618-235-2700, ext. 5174 or 618-301-6721

St. Clair TNR & Rescue

What does your charity do? St. Clair TNR & Rescue is a local nonprofit organization run by volunteers (located in Belleville, serving St. Clair County) who help the community by performing TNR (trap, neuter and return) on feral and community cats throughout the county at little to no charge to the residents. County members call our number, appointments are set to trap (spay, vaccinate and return the feral/community cats), and the cats then live longer, healthier lives while the nuisance behaviors are long gone. We also help community members find low cost spay/neuter options for owned pets.

St. Clair TNR & Rescue also rescues animals from TNR locations and pulls animals from St. Clair County Animal Control. We do not discriminate. We take in ill animals, injured animals, FIV+ cats, pregnant mamas, litters of kittens, etc. We have a physical shelter and several foster homes. Cats and dogs are available for adoption year-round.

How can people help? There are several ways people can help St. Clair TNR & Rescue and the animals in our care. We are always looking for volunteers to transport animals to and from vet clinics, volunteers to help with TNR services and volunteers to foster cats and/or dogs. Please call 314-339-7481 if you’re able to help. Please consider choosing St. Clair TNR & Rescue as your Amazonsmile charity of choice. We have a wishlist on Amazon as well. And we are always thankful for donations. You can donate on our page at stclairtnrandrescue.vistaprintdigital.com by clicking on the donate button or by mail by sending donations to 3067 Plum Hill School Road, Belleville, IL 62221. Follow us on Facebook at Facebook.com/maggiesmuttmission to learn more.

Why should people give to your charity? St. Clair County is committed to going no kill by 2021. In order for this to happen, spaying/neutering feral cats is a must. St. Clair TNR & Rescue is committed to helping the county achieve this goal by providing TNR services to as many community members and their feral cat colonies as possible. We also provide food, shelter and medical care for those we rescue from the streets and from St. Clair County Animal Control. Some cats and dogs stay in our care for quite some time since their medical needs are so great.

Mailing address: 3067 Plum Hill School Road, Belleville, IL 62221

Phone number: 314-339-7481

Website: stclairtnrandrescue.vistaprintdigital.com

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Breese

Community Link

What does your charity do? For 46 years, Community Link has been dedicated to enhancing the lives of individuals with disabilities through a person-centered approach that promotes self-directed living choices and community integration opportunities. The mission of Community Link is to challenge, teach and inspire both participants and community, linking them in ways that enhance their lives.

How can people help? Community Link accepts monetary donations and appreciates the assistance of volunteers.

Why should people give to your charity? With the lack of state funding, Community Link has learned to do more with less and appreciates the support from individuals and companies through their monetary donations.

Without the support from the community, we would not be able to provide the high standard of service our participants and their families deserve and have come to expect from our organization.

Mailing address: 1665 N. Fourth St., Breese, IL 62230

Phone number: 618-526-8800

Website: commlink.org

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Cahokia

Cahokia Community Basket

What does your charity do? We are a food pantry that serves residents of St. Clair County.

How can people help? Donations can be dropped off at our building on Wednesday, monetary donations can be mailed to us at 500 Illinois 3, Cahokia, IL 62206.

Why should people give to your charity? Cahokia Community Basket is a 501c3 charity backed by the Cahokia Knights of Columbus and the St. Louis Area Foodbank. We are the only drive-thru food pantry in the state. We average 375 to 400 St. Clair County families each week during our two-hour, drive-thru distribution. We have a dedicated group of volunteers to do the work but rely totally on donations for food to distribute and money to pay our utilities. There is such a need for food assistance in St. Clair County. We are currently collecting food to provide each of our clients a full Christmas dinner. Last year, we were able to serve over 500 families at Christmas. We are hoping to do the same this year.

Mailing address: 500 Illinois 3, Cahokia, IL 62206

Phone number: 618-980-1575

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Collinsville

Collinsville Food Pantry

What does your charity do? The Collinsville Food Pantry offers grocery-style shopping to clients, Tote Me Home program (weekend meal package for school-age children) two soup kitchens, emergency food boxes, transient care packages for the homeless, utility assistance, senior commodities and resources for health care, dental, nutrition, employment services and food stamp application services.

How can people help? The services are provided through generous donations from local businesses, organizations, churches and individuals giving to the Collinsville Food Pantry. You can make a difference in the community by partaking in volunteering opportunities with us. Call 618-346-1861.

Why should people give to your charity? The Collinsville Food Pantry needs community support to continually provide quality services to those that are struggling and in need of assistance.

Mailing address: 201 E. Church St., Collinsville, IL 62234

Phone number: 618-346-1861

St. John’s Community Care

What does your charity do? Care compassionately for aging and disabled people, supporting their independence and their family caregivers.

How can people help? Donations help us to maintain a professional and compassionate level of care for each of our clients. Monetary gifts also allow us to offer the medical loan closet, support groups and caregiver training without charge.

People or groups interested in volunteering are encouraged to contact Stacey Rhodes at 618-344-5008. Volunteer opportunities include helping maintain our courtyard plants, playing games with participants and singing or musical performances for our participants in the Adult Day Program.

Why should people give to your charity? St. John’s Community Care is committed to serving those who are challenged with aging issues with love, dignity, and respect. We know that it’s not easy to grow old. That’s why every day at St. John’s we give hope to each person we serve. Showing them that they have a purpose and that they still have a choice in how they live their best possible lives.

We viewed our care for the aging and disabled through the lens of faith. We are committed to delivering quality caregiving options for families who are caring for aging loved ones. But it takes a lot of hard work, time and money to do what we do.

Mailing address: 222 Goethe Ave., Collinsville, IL 62234

Phone number: 618-344-5008

Website: stjohnscc.org

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East St. Louis

Call For Help, Inc.

What does your charity do? Call for Help, Inc. helps people overcome a variety of personal crises, ranging from sexual assault and poverty, to homelessness and mental illness. We change lives by giving people skills and support that empower them to overcome emotional and physical crises.

How can people help? Call For Help is determined to help others build new beginnings, but it is only possible with community support. We accept both monetary donations and gently used items. To find out more about our recent donation needs, call 618-397-0968, email info@callforhelpinc.org, text our donation text-line at 731-599-7864 or visit the Facebook page at Facebook.com/callforhelporg. We are always welcoming volunteers to our team. Email volunteer@callforhelpinc.org or our website www.callforhelpinc.org to learn more about volunteer opportunities.

Why should people give to your charity? Call for Help, Inc. was started in 1970 to recognize the need for a suicide prevention program in Madison and St. Clair counties. Since then, we have grown our services to provide the best programs to meet our community’s largest needs. We are incredibly proud to support local families for generations. The most needed services are not always the easiest to provide, however, Call For Help remains determined to be an institution that those most vulnerable can rely upon. We believe in helping people reach their goal of long-standing positive change whenever they are ready.

Mailing address: 9400 Lebanon Road, East St. Louis, IL 62203

Phone number: 618-397-0968

Website: callforhelpinc.org

Gateway Pet Guardians

What does your charity do? Animal welfare in the East St. Louis metro area.

How can people help? Donate, volunteer to walk dogs or volunteer to foster dogs and cats.

Why should people give to your charity? Our work is focused on eliminating pet homelessness in the East St. Louis community through intake and rehabilitation of pets, as well as community programming to keep pets with their families.

Mailing address: 5321 Manchester Ave., St. Louis, MO 63110 (will be moving to East St. Louis in January)

Phone number: 314-664-7398

Website: gatewaypets.com

Lessie Bates Davis Neighborhood House, Inc.

What does your charity do? Neighborhood House is a community center providing a wide range of programs and services to the East St. Louis community.

How can people help? People can donate toys, household goods or canned goods to help those in our community during the holiday season.

Why should people give to your charity? Neighborhood House has a long history in the East St. Louis community. Our community is one of the most impoverished in the surrounding area. People in East St. Louis need your help during the holiday season.

Mailing address: 1200 N. 13th St., East St. Louis, IL 62205

Phone number: 618-874-0777

Website: lessiebatesdavis.org

Our Brothers’ Keepers of Southern Illinois

What does your charity do? Our Brothers’ Keepers of Southern Illinois (OBK) is a Christian faith-based organization dedicated to the full integration of formerly incarcerated persons, “returning citizens,” into the local community. OBK assists returning citizens in attaining productive citizenship by participation in re-entry services, including supportive housing, life and career skills, and counseling services. Productive citizenship and full integration is demonstrated by a stable lifestyle, which includes dignified housing, necessary identification, employment and/or a reliable income (such as SSI, SS or disability), possession of life skills, a sincere willingness to become sober/addiction-free and maintenance of strong family and faith-based relationships. OBK’s program coordinator and staff collaborate with additional providers, faith communities and government agencies to achieve full integration.

How can people help? OBK is in need of funds to support the utilities of our reintegration office, and to provide emergency stopgap assistance while returning citizens await permanent housing, jobs, etc.

Why should people give to your charity? Many returning citizens are released from prisons with inadequate or no support. Our Brothers’ Keepers recognizes that each person has a unique history, strengths, talents, abilities and challenges. OBK supports these individuals, strengthening families and communities and providing hope.

Mailing address: P.O. Box 398, East St. Louis, IL 62200-0398

Phone number: 618-482-5570

Website: obkministry.org

St. Vincent de Paul Society Belleville Council

What does your charity do? St. Vincent de Paul Society works with thousands of poor people, who are hungry, homeless, disabled, in need of clothing and/or looking to regain employment. Through the Cosgrove Soup Kitchen in East St. Louis, more than 100,000 lunches are served to the poor and homeless annually. SVDP also operates two mobile dining buses, bringing 17,000 hot meals to the elderly, disabled and children each year. Of those receiving food on the dining buses in the evening, 75 percent are children. During the holidays, the buses take on the ambiance of season, e.g. a Santa bus, a bunny bus, etc.

The SVDP Ministry Center, located at 3718 State St., provides space for the Soup Kitchen, Thrift Store for clothing and household items, Help Center and a variety of programs for personal budgeting, job skills seminar and the Job Link newsletter for those seeking employment. SVDP provides help with state IDs, utility bills, rent and bus passes to get to work.

How can people help? Donations of funds, clothing, household items, personal hygiene items and paper products are accepted year-round. Volunteers are welcome to contact the St. Vincent Society at 618-394-0126 to offer their skills and life experiences to those in need and to alleviate human suffering.

Why should people give to your charity? The poor, hungry, homeless and those struggling in their life’s journey deserve the attention and care of those who have been blessed with resources. Helping SVDP help others elevate the quality of life for all in the community. The heart of Vincentian ministry is the heart of Jesus, God’s beloved. We are brothers and sisters to each other in the human community as we move through the journey of life together. The poor have much to teach us as we share a common humanity and work to alleviate suffering in a spirit of justice and charity — not just in one season but as a way of life. “For God so loved the world that he sent his only son.” Blessings multiply when shared by generous donation of time, talent and treasure.

Mailing address: 13 Vieux Carre Drive. P.O. Box 3415, East St. Louis, IL 62203

Phone number: 618-394-0126

Website: svdpsouthil.org

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Fairview Heights

Hoyleton Youth and Family Services

What does your charity do? Hoyleton cares for some of the most vulnerable children and families in Southern Illinois through behavioral and mental health, residential, foster care and adoption services. Our focus is simple: ”One child at a time.” We help to restore family relationships and prepare young adults to make positive life decisions and become productive citizens. We are building stronger communities through programs that strengthen and preserve families.

How can people help? Help us make spirits brighter this holiday season by adopting a child’s wish list or providing an item for stockings. Contact Amanda Garrison at 618-688-4742 or agarrison@hoyleton.org for details on adopting a child’s wish list or for volunteer opportunities. Stop by Starbucks in the St. Clair Square mall or the Starbucks at 1411 W. U.S. 50 in O’Fallon, IL to donate an item for Christmas stockings, or visit our Amazon stocking wish list at amzn.to/2PGDjmp.

Why should people give to your charity? Many of the children in our residential programs will spend the holidays with us. Many of the families in our community-based programs are struggling to make ends meet. We do everything we can to make this time of year as joyous as possible for those who may be having difficulties. We are hopeful that you might join us this Christmas season to make sure every child in our care has a gift to open on Christmas.

Mailing address: 8 Executive Drive, Suite 200, Fairview Heights, IL 62208

Phone number: 618-688-4727

Website: hoyleton.org

The Illinois Center for Autism

What does your charity do? We serve children and adults with autism spectrum disorder.

How can people help? It is because of our supporters (both donors and volunteers) that we are able to continue to serve all of our clients in the most innovative way possible.

Why should people give to your charity? We have over 40 years of developing programs for children and adults with autism spectrum disorder. We have a management team with more than 100 years of experience combined, and we are serving the most vulnerable individuals in our society. One in 58 people are diagnosed. The diagnosis has been said to be greater than the combined diagnosis of juvenile diabetes, AIDS, cancer, cerebral palsy, cystic fibrosis, muscular dystrophy and Down Syndrome. We need your help.

Mailing address: 548 S. Ruby Lane, Fairview Heights, IL 62208

Phone number: 618-398-7500

Website: illinoiscenterforautism.org

National Foundation for Ectodermal Dysplasias

What does your charity do? The mission of the National Foundation for Ectodermal Dysplasias (NFED) is to empower and connect people touched by ectodermal dysplasias through education, support and research. In 1981, Mary Kaye Richter and 12 other families affected by ectodermal dysplasias organized and founded the NFED in Mascoutah, Illinois. Mary Kaye’s toddler, Charley, had been diagnosed with hypohidrotic ectodermal dysplasia, and she was looking for answers on how to best take care of him.

How can people help? The NFED has many ways that people can help:

Donate cash, check, credit card, stock and/or in-kind items.

Host a fundraising or awareness event.

Advocate to mandate medical insurance coverage for dental treatments.

Volunteer at our office to help with mailings.

Help raise awareness on social media.

Why should people give to your charity? The NFED is the only organization in the U.S. whose sole mission is to empower those with ectodermal dysplasias. We are committed to the ectodermal dysplasias community. Ectodermal dysplasias are inherited disorders that involve defects in the hair, nails, sweat glands and teeth. When a person has at least two types of abnormal ectodermal features — for example, malformed teeth and extremely sparse hair — the individual is identified as being affected by ectodermal dysplasia.

The NFED has grown considerably since the early 1980s, a time when little was known about the rare conditions and the medical literature cited only a half dozen affected individuals in the United States. Today, we serve more than 8,100 families worldwide.

When you are missing some or all of your teeth, smiling, eating and talking are not easy. Here at the NFED, we believe every person deserves a smile. We work with families to help them understand treatment options, to increase their access to care and to find financial assistance for that care. We have a network of Dental Treatment Centers, offer a donated implant program with the help of Straumann, educate care providers through symposia and have provided clients with more than $1.5 million in assistance for needed care.

Perhaps our greatest success comes from providing individuals and families affected by ectodermal dysplasia with a place to turn for reliable information, support and hope. We publish high-quality information to empower families with knowledge that their doctors often cannot give. We stand with open arms to welcome the family who has just been diagnosed, to answer their questions, and to allay their fears. The foundation educates families that anything is possible for the person who is affected by ectodermal dysplasia. The conditions come with challenges, but with support and encouragement, families can expect a bright future.

The NFED is also dedicated to finding a cure. We have funded more than $2.5 million in research at more than 40 centers around the world and sponsored numerous scientific conferences for specific syndromes and classification. NFED-funded research projects have identified genes for numerous ectodermal dysplasias, established treatment protocols and characterized many of the syndromes.

Mary Kaye retired as executive director in 2010. Today, Mary Fete leads the NFED and carries out the vision that the first dozen families had back in 1981: to be a resource for the ectodermal dysplasias community and to assure its families that they are never alone.

Mailing address: 6 Executive Drive, Suite 2, Fairview Heights, IL 62208

Phone number: 618-566-2020

Website: nfed.org

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Freeburg

Fire Truck O’ Toys

What does your charity do? Our mission is to make sure every hospitalized child and family receives that joy in the form of the simplest of gifts at Christmas — a toy.

How can people help? New, unwrapped toys can be delivered to any of our drop off locations, or we accept monetary donations for Santa’s helpers to buy our toys.

Why should people give to your charity? To date, we’ve collected over 20,000 toys and have distributed to five St. Louis hospitals, including SSM Cardinal Glennon, St. Louis Children’s Hospital, Shriner’s Hospital for Children, Mercy Hospital for Children and Ranken Jordan Pediatric Bridge Hospital. Our ongoing outreach is expanding every year as more organizations have come to support the program. Administration and support costs are managed by our sponsorship partners, allowing us to focus 100 percent of donations for the purchase of toys and gifts for the children in our local hospitals.

Mailing address: P.O. Box 209, Freeburg, IL 62243

Phone number: 618-578-8384

Website: firetruckotoys.org

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Godfrey

Beverly Farm Foundation

What does your charity do? Beverly Farm Foundation provides services to individuals with developmental disabilities. We ensure each individual has physical and emotional security and a dignified quality of life, with opportunities and challenges, within each individual’s functional capabilities.

How can people help? We accept monetary donations, clothing and household items (in our resale shop) and are always looking for amazing volunteers.

Why should people give to your charity? We have been providing exceptional services for 121 years in the Riverbend community, and our staff strive to live our mission out each day.

Mailing address: 6301 Humbert Road, Godfrey, IL 62035

Phone number: 618-466-0367

Website: beverlyfarm.org

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Granite City

The Good Samaritan House of Granite City, Inc.

What does your charity do? The Good Samaritan House is the largest homeless shelter for women with children in the St. Louis metro-east region. We provide safe temporary housing for those whose lives are impacted by homelessness while offering residents the opportunity to enhance life skills, increase self-esteem and become self-sufficient.

How can people help? The Good Samaritan House of Granite City is part of a larger collaborative effort to end homelessness in our community. Donating you time and financial resources is one of the most effective ways to eradicating homelessness in our communities. While the average cost of a night in a hotel can range from $50 and up, shelter such as Good Samaritan House can provide housing, food, case management and other necessary resources for a fraction of the cost ($5.25/person/day). We are also an agency that heavily relies on the influences and expertise of those that reside in the communities that we serve. We, with open arms, welcome members of our community to volunteer their time and expertise to work hands on with those we serve.

Why should people give to your charity? For 20 years, the Good Samaritan House has been at the forefront of ending homelessness in Madison and St. Clair counties. Incorporated in 1998, the Good Samaritan House of Granite City was established based on a needs assessment that identified an increase of homelessness for women with children. The most recent needs assessment has now identified that over 50 percent of the homeless population in Madison County is represented by children. Due to limited access to safe, affordable housing and a minimum wage rate of $8.25, while employed many of our families would need to work more than 90 hours a week to afford the state living wage of $15.67/hour for a two bedroom unit and $20.87/hour for a three bedroom unit. The Good Samaritan House serves over 250 individuals a year and serves over 34,000 meals to families in need. With an 89 percent success rate, the Good Samaritan House Emergency Shelter Program continues to be an effective way of transitioning women with children from homelessness to self-sufficiency within 90 days.

Mailing address: 1825 Delmar Ave., Granite City, IL 62040

Phone number: 618-876-0607

Website: goodsamaritanhouse.org

Mid-Town Moms

What does your charity do? Our mission is to support and strengthen our communities by providing underprivileged children with birthday and Christmas gifts.

Donations for teenagers are always low. This means many of the teens will receive no gifts during the holiday season. Our goal is to brighten the holidays of area teenagers along with their siblings with special gifts of fun and practical items. We will provide holiday gifts to homeless and low-income teenagers who may not have any special attention at this festive time.

How can people help? We are collecting toys and gift baskets for local children and teens. Donate a basket as a group, department or individual. Gift basket ideas: crafts, sports, board games, candy, video games, bath stuff, coffee, baking, man cave.

These baskets will be going to teens aged 13-17. We cannot accept anything illegal or inappropriate. You can also check out full wish list on our website midtownmoms.com.

Why should people give to your charity? Our toy and gift basket drive will be on Dec. 9 from 12 to 6 p.m. at The Cottage Hills VFW located at 121 Williams St. in Cottage Hills, Illinois. Any and all donations are greatly appreciated, and we can pick up any donations. Contact Savanna at 618-580-7291. Monetary donations can be made at paypal.me/midtownmoms.

Mailing address: 2916 Myrtle Ave., Granite City, IL 62040

Phone number: 618-580-7291

Website: midtownmom.com

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Mascoutah

Leu Civic Center Inc.

What does your charity do? The Leu Civic Center plans and organizes a variety of recreational, cultural, social and civic programs for the youth and families of Mascoutah, Scott Air Force Base, Lebanon, New Baden, Freeburg and the surrounding communities. The center has been providing a a variety of programs for over 40 years.

We offer programs for children and their families to encourage physical fitness, teamwork and respect for themselves and others around them. Financial assistance is provided to families in need and any military family with a deployed family member.

On school days, we provide a late afternoon meal for any child who needs one, no questions asked.

How can people help? Individuals and corporations can help by making a donation to help us keep providing the services we offer and/or by volunteering their time, services and skills.

Why should people give to your charity? We are one of the most affordable recreational/sports centers in the bi-state area. We only charge a family $40 per year for membership and all of our classes. Any family that needs financial assistance is provided with a scholarship. We also provide all military families with a deployed family member full scholarships.

Mailing address: 213 N. Market St., Mascoutah, IL 62258

Phone number: 618-566-2175

Website: leuciviccenter.com

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Millstadt

Equus Rescue and Therapy

What does your charity do? Equus Rescue is a 501c3 nonprofit that began in 2008 after its founder, Margo Sutter, learned the shocking fate of many racehorses that can no longer race — many between 2 and 5 years old. She realized that having the potential to live another 25-30 years gave ample time to retrain these magnificent, intuitive animals for a second career as therapy animals. Horses have an amazing ability to connect non-verbally with humans in a highly therapeutic manner, and in some cases, have even surpassed traditional methods. It was a win-win opportunity.

While Equus Rescue focuses mainly on rescuing, rehabilitating, retraining and re-homing thoroughbred racehorses, it is not breed exclusive when need prevails. To date, Equus Rescue has re-homed, fostered or transitioned over 400 horses into safe or permanent environments.

Now that we have obtained more room at our farm, including a huge indoor arena, we are ready to launch in-house programs focused on youths at risk, our country’s military veterans, crime victim groups and other populations who may find greater comfort in a non-verbal therapeutic environment. However, it remains a huge financial commitment to support and retrain them to serve in new therapeutic roles. Currently, Equus Rescue supports 54 horses, including descendants of Secretariat, Seattle Slew, and even Man o’ War.

How can people help? We always welcome volunteers who love horses. It’s not just mucking stalls. Horse-handling skills are always very helpful, but not required. Bring your talents and we will put them to good use. We also can use donated items such as pine shavings, bags of feed, grooming supplies, lots and lots of hay, and monetary gifts — for all of which we will happily provide a donation receipt. Please ask your employer or philanthropic group to consider sponsoring a horse for a year.

Why should people give to your charity? Currently, we are 100 percent donation funded and 100 percent volunteer staffed, meaning that the donations we receive pay for hay, grain, veterinary expenses, rent and utilities. It costs about $100 per day for hay alone. With your help, we can achieve our goal to become self-sustaining through our therapy programs, clinics and private rental of our new indoor arena, which is suitable for a wide variety of events from horse clinics, shows, riding lessons, training and even horse-themed parties and wedding receptions.

Mailing address: P.O. Box 1032, Columbia, IL 62236

Website: equusrescue.org

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New Baden

Zion United Church of Christ’s Giving Tree

What does your charity do? The Giving Tree provides food and clothing to residents of New Baden and New Memphis on a regular and dependable basis. During the summer, children in the area are provided lunch Monday-Friday through our Summer Lunch Program. The Giving Tree also provides backpacks with school supplies for children in New Baden before they go back to school. Around the holidays, the Giving Tree provides Thanksgiving meals and Christmas gifts for the children in the area.

How can people help? Monetary contributions can be made at any time, as well as donations of clothing and nonperishable food items. Feel free to call the church at 618-588-4135 if you are interested in volunteering or to find out how you can contribute in another way.

Why should people give to your charity? It is our mission to be a community of God’s people who care for one another by translating our faith into action and being responsive to the social, emotional, intellectual and possible spiritual needs of those around us in our community.

Mailing address: 414 W. Hanover St., New Baden, IL 62265

Phone number: 618-588-4135

Website: zionuccnb.net

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O’Fallon

Hearts in Faith

What does your charity do? We empower single moms and youth by promoting healthy relationships, as well as emotional, mental and spiritual strength.

How can people help? We are in need of sponsors for 12 single moms and their children. Sponsors can purchase requested items or provide a monetary donation for the agency to do the shopping. Cleaning and hygiene products and new blankets are needed for care packages.

Why should people give to your charity? Supporting single moms and youth will ultimately strengthen our communities and enhance the lives of these families.

Mailing address: 7 Eagle Center, Suite B1, O’Fallon, IL 62269

Phone number: 314-529-0214

Website: heartsinfaith.org

Rock Steady Boxing O’Fallon, Inc.

What does your charity do? We design and conduct exercise classes for people who have been diagnosed with Parkinson’s disease. Our training classes focus on agility, balance, coordination, strength and flexibility. We box using heavy bags, focus mitts, jump rope, ropes, bands, medicine balls and free weights — all designed to help slow the progression of Parkinson’s. All movements can be modified so that anyone with a diagnosis of Parkinson’s at any level may participate.

Rock Steady Boxing classes in Belleville and Troy use forceful exercises to combat the advance of Parkinson's disease.

How can people help? We need volunteers (aka “corner persons”) to assist our boxers with the various movements we use to help their balance and coordination. Having a corner person “spot” our boxers is a safety precaution.

Additionally, receiving financial help will allow us to purchase more equipment, a larger space and get more instructors certified to teach.

Why should people give to your charity? Parkinson’s disease affects families — not just the person who is diagnosed. At Rock Steady Boxing O’Fallon, we share a beautiful and special camaraderie that only those affected by PD can understand.

Mailing address: 751 Lakepointe Centre Drive, O’Fallon, IL 62269

Phone number: 618 624-3856

Website: rsbofallon.com

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State Park Place

Making A Difference

What does your charity do? We feed, clothe and minister to those living on the streets. We try to fill the huge gap between homeless services and the homeless themselves. “A random act of kindness goes a long way towards someone who is stuck in a desolate place.”

How can people help? Visit our website at becausetheymatter.com or check us out on Facebook at Facebook.com/becausetheymatter for more info. We are always looking to partner up with churches, businesses and other organizations.

Why should people give to your charity? It doesn’t matter which charity you give to, it should come from the heart. You don’t have to give us anything, you can hop on one of our shuttle buses and join us one day.

Mailing address: P.O. Box 101, Collinsville, IL 62234

Phone number: 1-618-401-0538

Website: becausetheymatter.com

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St. Louis

Asthma and Allergy Foundation of America, St. Louis Chapter

What does your charity do? AAFA-STL provides prescription allergy, asthma and eczema medications to low-income children, as well as providing nebulizers and other asthma rescue equipment to school nurses that can be used in an emergency.

AAFA-STL also provides educational workshops on food allergy and asthma for the community.

How can people help? Monetary donations are accepted. Find out more at aafastl.org/donate.

Volunteers are needed to help plan the Orchid Affair gala event and to join our speakers bureau.

Why should people give to your charity? One in 10 people in our community is affected by asthma and over 5 percent of children have life-threatening food allergies. St. Clair and Madison County have the highest instances of asthma in the state of Illinois. AAFA-STL helps children and their families breathe easy.

Mailing address: 1500 S. Big Bend Blvd., Suite 1S, St. Louis, MO 63117

Phone number: 314-645-2422

Website: aafastl.org

Autism Speaks

What does your charity do? Autism Speaks is dedicated to promoting solutions, across the spectrum and throughout the life span, for the needs of individuals with autism and their families through advocacy and support; increasing understanding and acceptance of people with autism spectrum disorder; and advancing research into causes and better interventions for autism spectrum disorder and related conditions.

Autism Speaks enhances lives today and is accelerating a spectrum of solutions for tomorrow.

Locally, we are providing families with access to over 40 free toolkits, connecting them to much-needed services through our Autism Response Team, hosting sensory-friendly events, like our Autism Speaks Walk and Caring Santa programs, and awarding over $20,000 in local impact grants annually to incredible local organizations working in the autism community.

How can people help? You can donate online at act.autismspeaks.org or by calling our local office at 314-989-1003.

Autism Speaks is always looking for volunteers. The biggest needs are for our three annual events: our Chef Gala in April, our Golf Classic in September and our Walk in October. Reach out to us at 314-989-1003 or amanda.kernan@autismspeaks.org if you’d like to get involved or want more information.

Why should people give to your charity? More than 85 percent of every dollar Autism Speaks spends funds programs and services in science, family services, advocacy and increasing understanding and acceptance, exceeding Better Business Bureau guidelines each year. The majority of this funding goes toward science, followed by our family services, awareness and advocacy efforts.

We are working toward increasing funding in every mission area so that a significant impact is made for everyone affected by autism.

Mailing address: 9200 Olive Blvd. Suite 202, St. Louis, MO 63132

Phone number: 314-989-1003

Website: autismspeaks.org

The National Children’s Cancer Society

What does your charity do? The National Children’s Cancer Society (NCCS) tirelessly and compassionately supports families making their way through the daunting world of childhood cancer. With over 30 years of experience serving more than 43,000 children, NCCS has become a master navigator of this world, helping families get where they need to be — physically, financially and emotionally — to give them hope and to give their children the best possible shot at survival. Distributing nearly $66 million to families over its lifetime with the help of compassionate donors, NCCS is able to take a “no matter what” approach, creating a clear path through the labyrinth of childhood cancer and survivorship to help families stay strong, stay positive and stay together.

How can people help? People can help families battling childhood cancer by making a donation on our website (thenccs.org/donate), hosting their own fundraiser to benefit NCCS and/or creating a Facebook fundraiser from our Facebook page, Facebook.com/thenccs.

Why should people give to your charity? Because no family should go through childhood cancer alone.

Mailing address: 500 N. Broadway, Suite 1850, St. Louis, MO 63102

Phone number: 314-241-1600

Website: thenccs.org

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Swansea

Living Independently Now Center, Inc.

What does your charity do? LINC provides independent living services to people with all types of disabilities and all ages, including but not limited to advocacy; peer support; independent living skills training; information and referral; and both youth and nursing home transition. Our services are holistic in nature, ensuring that all needs are addressed. And 51 percent or more of our board and staff positions are filled by people with disabilities.

How can people help? Donations are gratefully accepted at our office, on our website or by mail. Gifts of both money and time are truly valued. We are currently seeking volunteers for several projects, and we are also seeking mission-minded individuals to serve on our board of directors. Give us a call for more information.

Why should people give to your charity? Giving is a win-win situation. You get to feel good about donating to support quality local services that help people with varying disability-related needs. LINC’s support groups, equipment loan program, and community programs are funded by your donations. And our state or federally funded programs, restricted by requirements, are enhanced by your generosity. People with disabilities in our community live better through receiving assistive devices or equipment and/or support from others who have been there. LINC’s consumers are able to live more independently, creating stronger individuals and a more inclusive community.

Mailing address: 15 Emerald Terrace, Swansea, IL 62226

Phone number: 618-235-9988

Website: lincinc.org

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Troy

Equipping The Called Adoption & Foster Ministry

What does your charity do? Equipping the Called is a nonprofit, which exists to assist children in crisis, kinship placements, safe family program participants and “at risk” families identified by the Department Children and Family Services or law enforcement in Southwestern Illinois. At times, foster families receive children in crisis with little or no notice. Children are often placed into foster care with no personal items. In many cases, they come into care with only the clothes on their backs. Equipping the Called provides foster families the opportunity to shop at our foster closet boutique for clothing, backpacks, formula, diapers, shoes, socks and underwear, all at no cost to the family. All items provided to children by Equipping the Called are either in new or “like new” condition. Families are given one-hour, private appointments so they can select items without the normal distractions of public shopping.

How can people help? Equipping The Called receives more and more calls every week from families in need. We need donations of new clothing (including socks and underwear), money to purchase new shoes and diapers and store gift cards. Volunteers are needed to organize new clothing and diaper drives, assist with day-to-day running of the foster closet, assist families when shopping and sort donations.

Why should people give to your charity? Foster care is not seasonal. More and more children are coming into care due to the opioid crisis. With your help, Equipping The Called will be able to help more families in need.

We can’t solve the crisis of children being removed from families, but we can assist in helping them transition into a family with self-esteem and dignity.

Mailing address: P.O. Box 171 , Troy, IL 62294

Phone number: 618-806-7806

Website: equippingthecalled.org

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Waterloo

Human Support Services

What does your charity do? We envision a community in which all abilities are embraced and everyone is encouraged to live their best lives.

We help individuals with developmental and intellectual disabilities, mental health concerns or substance abuse issues embrace their abilities and build satisfying, productive and valued lives in the community.

Our goal is to help them change their lives for the better by providing programs and services that support individual recovery efforts and encourage them to pursue their goals.

How can people help? As a 501c3 nonprofit, Human Support Services (HSS) relies on the support of our community to provide our services and program. With your help, we impact more than 1,300 local lives every year. Donations can be made online here: hss1.org/annual-holiday-appeal or by mail to Human Support Services, 988 N. Illinois 3 P.O. Box 146, Waterloo, Illinois 62298-0146.

Why should people give to your charity? Help and hope. Chances for change. That is what we give here at Human Support Services.

To the individual who comes through our doors battling a mental illness, Human Support Services is the help she needs to rediscover her best self. Our counselors and doctors are her guides to a renewed sense of wellness and hope for the future.

For the young man with developmental disabilities, we are the second home he has longed for, a place where his abilities are celebrated. Our aides and therapists are the instructors and support he needs to help him become a meaningful member of our community.

Over the last 45 years, HSS has been giving help, hope and second chances to the families of Monroe County and beyond.

As our communities have grown in size, HSS has evolved to meet the changing needs, from increasing our residential capacity for clients with developmental disabilities, to expanding our mental health counseling services.

We know a community is only as strong as each of its members, and we’re here for each and every one.

Help and hope, chances and change. These are words that define us.

What defines you?

Mailing address: 988 N. Illinois 3 P.O. Box 146, Waterloo, IL 62298-0146

Phone number: 618-939-4444

Website: hss1.org

Monroe County House of Neighborly Service

What does your charity do? The House of Neighborly Service is a group of churches, agencies, schools, civic groups and organizations who have the common mission to empower families and individuals in their lives.

How can people help? We are an agency of volunteers who provide food, clothing and other assistance to individuals and families in Monroe County. We welcome any donations relating to those needs, as well as individuals who wish to volunteer.

Why should people give to your charity? House of Neighborly Service is a non-profit, community-based organization that is all about neighbors helping neighbors. We are not a government funded agency, and we work with individuals and families one-on-one to meet their specific needs.

Mailing address: 1331 Jamie Lane, Waterloo, IL 62298

Phone number: 618-939-8900

Website: mocohouseofneighborlyservice.weebly.com

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