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Cheer Club kicks off, donations more critically needed than ever

With Thanksgiving now behind us, the holiday season is well underway. And while it’s going to be an unusual holiday season amid the COVID-19 pandemic, some things haven’t changed this year, most notably, the importance of giving back to our friends and neighbors in need.

Due to this, we hope our readers will consider brightening the holiday of a local child this year by donating to the Journal’s annual Cheer Club, which has for decades collected unwrapped toys and gifts for area youth who might not otherwise receive presents during the holiday season.

“So many families in our community have been affected by COVID through job losses and shutdowns. Now more than ever, we need to support each other and the children who need it most,” Mining Journal Publisher Ann Troutman said in Friday’s Journal article about the program. “The response the community makes towards the Cheer Club is overwhelming. Please don’t let up! Remember, we are all in this together and we can make a difference together as well.”

Gifts are collected at drop-off locations throughout Marquette County — including the Journal’s office, Ace Hardware in Gwinn and several RangeBank locations — and then distributed to the Salvation Army and the Society of St. Vincent de Paul, agencies that ensure the presents reach a local family in need.

However, some alterations have been made to the donation drop-off process at the Journal’s office to ensure the safety of donors and organizers amid the COVID-19 pandemic.

The Journal’s office, located at 249 W. Washington St. in downtown Marquette, remains closed to the public due to coronavirus, but donors will still be able to drop off their Cheer Club gifts in a box located inside the building’s vestibule.

Donors will also safely be able to continue the tradition of getting their photo taken with their donation at the Journal’s office.

While the donation of toys for younger children is always appreciated, we also encourage donors to consider older kids and teens, who might enjoy gifts such as headphones, gift certificates, hoodies and other items.

And even though the program just kicked off on Friday and runs through Christmas Eve, we’re already seeing the generosity of our community through the donations of gifts and monetary donations.

We thank all those who have donated already and encourage others to do so, as it warms our hearts to see the wonderful gifts donated by area residents, as any gift, large or small, can brighten a local child’s holiday season.

To learn more about this year’s program, drop-off sites and procedures, see Journal Staff Writer Ryan Spitza’s article that appeared in Friday’s edition of the Journal.

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