How you can help others during the holidays - WKOW 27: Madison, WI Breaking News, Weather and Sports

How you can help others during the holidays


MADISON (WKOW) -- We begin this week of Thanksgiving with a look at how local nonprofits are already looking ahead to make sure they can meet the need for the rest of the holiday season.

"There is not a week that goes by that I hear, ‘I never thought I would be in this position,'" said Paul Ashe, Luke House community meal program director.

Luke House in Madison will serve anywhere from 80,000 to 100,000 meals a year, but they rely on holiday giving to make that happen.

"For us, people are not as apt to write that check as they are in November and December," he said.

"Each year there are more volunteers and also more people who need to be served, so it is great the community is there to help," said Victoria Budynsky, a volunteer center coordinator at United Way of Dane County.

She says the Boys & Girls Club of Dane County, Independent Living and the VFW Post in Sun Prairie can use volunteers to help cleanup after their Thanksgiving meals.

But an outpouring of community support has allowed many groups to meet the need for Thanksgiving and start planning ahead for the rest of the holiday season.

"We have quite a few volunteer opportunities for the holidays, which includes even stuff earlier in December like gift wrapping, doing donation drives and things of that nature," Budynsky said.

Although people are most generous during the holidays, Ashe says August is actually the busiest month in terms of need at Luke House because families are spending more getting children ready for the start of another school year.

No matter the time of year, Ashe says donations are always appreciated.

"It is about a lot of people doing a little to make it all work together."

Whether you are looking for places to volunteer, donate or get a holiday meal yourself, you can call United Way at 2-1-1 for more information.

Click here for a holiday wish list provided by the United Way of Dane County if you are looking for more ways to help local organizations.

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