Posted 12/01/15 (Tue)
By Neal A. Shipman
The sights and sounds of the Christmas season are all around us. Homes are festively decorated with a Christmas tree and lights, stores are filled with all kinds of wonderful gift ideas, and music extolling the wonder of Christmas fills the airwaves.
Christmas is a wonderful time of the year. It is a time of year when our hearts are filled with joy and gladness. It is a time when we should be enjoying all that is so very special about the Christmas season - the birth of Jesus, the shopping for gifts for everyone on our gift list, and taking part in holiday parties and enjoying the company of family and friends.
That is the way that Christmas is supposed to be.
For the majority of the people in McKenzie County, that is the way that Christmas has always been and will always be. But that is not the case for many people living in communities across McKenzie County. For them, this Christmas, like so many other past Christmases isn’t going to be as merry. For them, there won’t be special presents under the Christmas tree this year. And there won’t be a special Christmas meal.
While that may be hard to imagine for many of us, it is a reality.
But it doesn’t have to be that way. And thanks to the efforts of several organizations in the county, including the McKenzie County Social Services, the McKenzie County Food Pantry, The Salvation Army, the Watford City Eagles Club Auxiliary, the Watford City Police Foundation, as well as many other local groups, efforts are being made to help make this Christmas season a very special time for those in our communities less fortunate than us.
For the past several years, the Social Services office has sponsored the Giving Tree that contains ornaments filled with gift ideas for area children and adults who are in need this holiday season. This year, trees are set up at First International Bank & Trust and at CornerStone Bank. It is indeed heartwarming to have so many caring people within our community willing to step forward and purchase those extra gifts to ensure there will be presents and toys under Christmas Trees that might have otherwise been bare. But taking care of those individuals represented on the Giving Tree is just the tip of the gifts that are needed this holiday season.
In addition to the support that we all give to the efforts of Social Services and the McKenzie County Food Pantry, we can also help brighten this holiday season by dropping a few dollars in The Salvation Army Kettle, or by donating to the Watford City Police Foundation’s Blue Santas.
We all have it in our power to help make this Christmas season a time of blessing and sharing, and to bring smiles and cheer to the people that need it the most.
After all, isn’t that what Christmas is all about.
If you would like to help make a difference this holiday season, contact the McKenzie County Social Services at 444-3661 or the McKenzie County Food Pantry at 444-3451.
With just a little effort from all of us, we can bring smiles and help to so many people who are in need this holiday season.