Christmas Cheer hopes to raise $250,000 through online donations

BARRIE, ONT. —
The official launch for Christmas Cheer in Barrie kicked off Friday to raise $250,000 to help support 1,800 local families.

However, things have changed amid the pandemic, and cash donations are no longer accepted, along with food and toys.

The program will accept online donations to reach its quarter-of-a-million-dollar goal, and that’s not all that’s changed.

Christmas Cheer handed out hampers to people in years past, but that may not be possible this year with COVID, but what will happen is still up in the air.

“Things are changing day-to-day, so we’re going to have to make that call in the next couple of weeks how exactly that’s going to look,” said Christmas Cheer Barrie president Leah Wells.

The organization is also moving to 49 Truman Road, but with no bus stop nearby, staff have started a petition to have one permanently moved to the location.

Wells said having the bus stop is necessary, not only for those who pick up from the location but also for staff.

“Christmas Cheer will be going on for as long as it’s needed, and also because there are people that work at that building that it could benefit as well,” she said.

They hope Barrie Transit will bring the current Huronia Road bus route down Truman Road to save folks the long walk up the winding road.

In the meantime, Christmas Cheer organizers hope the community is feeling generous and will step up to help them reach their goal.

Organizers hope to have online application forms ready in a couple of weeks.

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