While Morehouse Parish residents make plans for a joyous Christmas, there are some who are less fortunate and won't have the means to provide a happy holiday for their family.
Crisis Assistance Ministries is non-profit organization that's purpose is to provide needy families with food and toys so that they too will have a good Christmas.
CAM director Monica Bayless has been with the center for over a year now. She helps to organize the donations brought in. Bayless said they've been “blessed this year” with contributions. She said families that meet the criteria have been able to come in once a month and get cloths and food.
The CAM offers help varying individuals in need, such as disadvantaged children and youth, single-parent families, homeless women and children, low-income senior citizens, handicapped and unemployed.
Bayless said the Boy Scouts Troop 355 collected canned goods this month for less fortunate families to have a Thanksgiving meal.
“They placed paper bags on people's doorsteps throughout Morehouse Parish one Saturday,” she said. “The following Saturday they picked them up with the canned food items inside.”
On Nov. 10, Cub Master Diana Ricks brought the canned items up to CAM and dropped them off. On Nov. 15, families that had been pre-selected, picked up the supplies.
“We try to provide them with food that has protein like canned meats, dried beans or rice,” Bayless said.
During the month of December, several individuals and organizations will be collecting and delivering food and toys to the center.
Bayless said Mer Rouge United Methodist Church will be among the churches who have pledged to help this year. Walgreens in Bastrop will have a box inside their store for people to drop off donations.
In order to meet the criteria of someone the CAM can assist, the individual must come to the center with proper identification, proof of income or government agency assistance, such as SSI, food stamps or cash assistance, document of recent release of incarceration or proof of hardship from and agency, church or pastor.
Donations may be dropped off at the CAM from 8 a.m. to noon on Tuesdays and Thursdays. CAM is located on 702 East Jefferson Ave. Any canned food items, toys and cloths will be greatly appreciated.
For more information, call CAM at 283.0475.