QUEEN’S PARK – Today in the Ontario Legislature Norm Miller highlighted various local charities and Christmas food and toy drives happening across Parry Sound-Muskoka to remind residents to give locally.
Mr. Norm Miller: This holiday season, I’m encouraging my constituents to shop locally. Today I want to encourage everyone to give locally as well.
There are an impressive number of groups in my riding working hard to ensure everybody is able to enjoy the holiday spirit. My family and I recently filled shoe boxes with necessities and small gifts and donated them to the Muskoka Shoebox Project. This year, 1,092 shoe boxes were donated to women’s shelters in Muskoka region, the highest number ever.
In Parry Sound, the Adopt a Senior program is entering its sixth year. Last year, 126 Christmas gift bags were distributed to vulnerable or isolated seniors. This initiative is made possible by collaboration between West Parry Sound District Community Support Services, the Parry Sound North Star and Canadore College.
The Moose FM annual Christmas Wish radiothon raised an incredible $100,587 for the Salvation Army in Bracebridge, as well as $35,000 in Parry Sound and $41,000 in Huntsville. The Salvation Army provides hampers and toys to families in need as well as year-round services including counselling and emergency housing.
Around my riding and across the province, food banks like the Manna Food Bank in Bracebridge are seeking donations to support families throughout the holiday season and the winter months that follow.
Fire fighters and police often help collect food and toys. I want to commend the Burk’s Falls and area fire fighters for their annual Christmas food drive in support of the Burk’s Falls and District Food Bank. I also want to recognize the OPP Muskoka–Georgian Bay Auxiliary Unit for their Stuff a Cruiser event, which filled nine cruisers with toys.
I encourage everybody to give locally this Christmas so that all can enjoy the holiday spirit.