Central Pennsylvania Community Action, Inc. provides many services to families and individuals throughout Centre and Clearfield counties from its offices in Clearfield, Philipsburg, Houtzdale, Bellefonte and Aaronsburg. One of those services includes an annual Christmas program hosted in December by Philipsburg Community Action. Preparation and planning for the program begins in early fall, and the organization starts to accept names in early November.
A number of organizations pulled together to make the PCA’s 2014 Christmas program possible through donations and volunteer hours:
• Holt Memorial Library set up a hat, glove and mitten tree.
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• Philipsburg-Osceola Middle School held a coat drive.
• Grays Woods Elementary School collected enough food to pack 60 bags. The children also made cards and collected money.
• Philipsburg Area Elementary School second-graders organized a food drive that collected more than 1,000 items.
• Grace United Methodist and Sandy Ridge United Methodist churches in Philipsburg donated gifts for the teens and food items.
• Sts. Peter and Paul Catholic Church donated money for meat vouchers and held a coat and food drive.
• American Home Patient gave food and money.
• Valley Voices sponsored a Christmas concert of which the admission cost was a food donation. The community choir also gave the PCA a cash donation that would be divided between four local food pantries.
• The Philipsburg Elks donated money and the Ladies Auxiliary of the Clearfield Moose gave turkeys, hams and other food.
• Comfort Keepers held a food drive, and state Rep. Scott Conklin donated 20 turkeys to the program. A typical Christmas food basket includes green beans, corn, a box of stuffing, a box of instant or bag of potatoes, cranberry sauce, a jar of gravy, pie filling and pie crust mix or cake mix, sweet potatoes, apple sauce, fruit mix, Jell-O or pudding and a $10 voucher toward the meat of their choice.
• The Toys for Tots program, sponsored by the Marine Corps League of Centre County, collected toys for local children. Toys are collected at multiple sites and taken to The Penn Stater Conference Center Hotel, where they are wrapped by volunteers. The Hope and Reliance fire companies pick up the collected toys. This year, Your Furniture 4 Less donated the use of his box truck to transport the toys to the Trinity United Methodist Church in Philipsburg, where the toys are distributed.
The 2014 Philipsburg Christmas program served close to 200 families with a Christmas basket and a meat voucher or turkey and almost 150 children with toys, hats, gloves, scarves and coats. CPCA would like to thank all of the organizations that contributed to the Christmas program. As always, CPCA continues to strive to meet our mission “strengthening communities in Centre and Clearfield counties by helping families and individuals to become self-sufficient.”