January 2, 2009

By Staff

Celebrate new year by helping others

Things are tight, but most Newcastle residents still had some presents under the tree or near the menorah last month. Now is the time to remember those in greater need. 

The New Year is a good time for establishing resolutions. One such resolution can be to think about sharing with those who need a helping hand. That can come in the form of cash or food donations. It can also come in the form of volunteering. 

Newcastle residents as a whole are among those families in a position to share, and many have and will continue to do so. Few have been on the receiving end of charitable gifts — but this year might be different.

One Newcastle woman called Issaquah Church and Community Services for assistance two days before Christmas. The snow had kept her from work for a week and now she didn’t have enough to pay the rent. And the cupboards were bare.

The Hopelink food bank in Redmond and the Renewal Food Bank near Factoria are both available to Newcastle families in need.

Newcastle families are still living a good life, relatively speaking. We have no doubt that most are generous with what they have. For Newcastle families making donations, the only real question is which charity to support, which one can make a real difference in the lives of others.

These agencies do good work helping others help themselves. We recommend local tax-deductible donations to:

Hopelink — Food, shelter, homelessness prevention, child development, transportation and adult literacy education. Donate online at www.hope-link.org. Mail checks or drop off food donations to 16225 N.E. 87th St., Suite A-1, P.O. Box 3577, Redmond, WA 98073. 

Renewal Food Bank — Established in 1998, Renewal Food Bank serves the hungry in East King County. Since its opening, Renewal has fed more than 100,000 people and continues to feed about 175 families each week. Mail checks or drop off donations to 2015 Richards Road, Bellevue, WA 98005.

The majority of Newcastle residents may not need the food banks often, but they exist for those who do. We hope Newcastle residents will take a few minutes to count their blessings and consider a year-round gift to community agencies nearby.

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