Leonardtown, MD – The Human Services Division of the St. Mary’s County Department of Aging & Human Services has been coordinating the Christmas Caring program with assistance from a number of community partners for at least 20 years, according to Human Services Division Manager, Cynthia Brown.

The Christmas Caring community partners include Mike’s Bikes, Marine Corps Toys for Tots, St. Mary’s County Department of Social Services, local churches, businesses, schools and community members. Gifts of toys, clothing and food are donated to families who meet income eligibility criteria.

“We feel it’s important to have a coordinated effort to assist families in need during the holiday season,” Brown said. By working with individuals and organizations who want to reach out to help others, the Division of Human Services can maximize the number of families served during the holiday season.

“The Christmas Caring effort is not just about toys and gifts…the holiday season is stressful for many people. Instances of depression, domestic violence, and suicide occur during what is viewed as the happiest time of year. Alleviating stress for families and making the holidays special for children is our main goal” Brown said.

Families who believe they may qualify for participation in Christmas Caring should contact the Department of Social Services. Individuals and organizations seeking to make donations should contact the Division of Human Services at 301-475-4200 ext. *1680.