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It’s easy to lend Santa a hand

December 7, 2018
Cape Coral Daily Breeze

Cape Coral, and indeed Lee County, is a wonderful place to live and work, to raise a family or enjoy retirement.

For most of us, anyway.

For too many, life can be as hard here as it is anywhere, sunny weather and a booming economy non-withstanding.

According to Lee County's most recent Community Health Needs Assessment Report, 37.7 percent of Lee County's population - 246,477 individuals - live below a federal poverty benchmark.

More than 6 percent of our neighbors report being "food insecure" often. Nearly 16 percent report being food insecure sometimes, the report states.

More than 500 children are in foster care.

If life can be hard, the holidays can be harder, especially for children whose eyes are bright with holiday magic, whose wish lists contain things that only Santa and helping hand or two can make possible.

There are a number of food and toy drives now under way throughout Lee County.

One is taking place this weekend at the Walmart on Del Prado Boulevard.

Beginning today, the Cape Coral Police Department will be outside the store collecting donations for its "Fill The Boat" Toy Drive.

Officers will accept toy donations today from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. and then again on Saturday and Sunday from 10 a.m. to 6 p.m. each day.

The CCPD has been doing this for a dozen years and officers collect - and distribute - about 2,000 toys.

Meanwhile, the Cape Coral Fire Department is continuing its toy drive with new, unwrapped toys being accepted at all of the city's fire stations.

The CCFD will accept toys and other gifts for children in need through Dec. 20.

They have been helping Santa now for more than two decades.

Collection boxes for the toy drive may be found at the following fire station locations:

Station 1 4610 Coronado Parkway

Station 2 701 Nicholas Parkway

Station 3 1627 Everest Parkway

Station 4 2007 Santa Barbara Boulevard

Station 5 1029 Diplomat Parkway

Station 6 4540 Chiquita Parkway

Station 7 3942 Burnt Store Road N

Station 8 707 S.W. 1st Street

Station 9 4107 Pelican Boulevard

Station 10 3623 Gator Circle West

We thank our public safety personnel for their efforts as we thank all of the organizations, businesses and individuals whose efforts make the holidays happier for our neighbors and theirs.

If you can help this year, we're sure your efforts will be rewarded with a smile or two Christmas morning.

And please don't forget the food drives.

The Cape's food pantry, the Cape Coral Caring Center, at 4645 S.E. 15th Ave., is always in need of non-perishables. Food donations and deliveries are accepted Monday - Friday from 9 a.m. to noon at the back door. Just ring the door bell.

Or visit their Facebook page for a look at holiday collections points, courtesy of area businesses.

-Breeze editorial



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