The holiday spirit moves many to donate at this time of year.  It feels good to give to others.  However, what happens once the holidays end? According to Jennifer Hollingsworth, executive director of The United Way of St. Mary’s County,  January is the toughest month for families in need. 

“January can sometimes be the coldest month and high utility costs take a toll on families who are forced to choose between keeping the heat and lights on or putting food on the table,” said Hollingsworth.  In response to this, United Way of St. Mary’s County started the Three Squares in a Bag program to help county families around the Martin Luther King, Jr. holiday.

The program provides a grocery bag filled with enough ingredients, menus, recipes and cooking instructions in order to provide a family with three meals a day for a week.  “Last year we were able to help 150 families, “said Hollingsworth. “This year, we want to be able to help even more families in St. Mary’s County.  No child should have to go to bed hungry.”  As a result, the organization is seeking individual and group donations, sponsorships from businesses, and individual volunteers who are willing to help fill the grocery bags. 

A one-time donation may be made to The United Way of St. Mary’s County and designated for the 3 Squares in a Bag program. If donating this year, the charitable contribution counts in this calendar year. However, the program itself takes place on Jan. 19, 2015. “It’s a great way to end this calendar year and capture the holiday spirit with a charitable donation that starts off the 2015 calendar year right by helping those who need it most,” said Hollingsworth.

For more information, to make a donation or to volunteer, contact Jennifer Hollingsworth at or call The United Way at 301-862-5577.