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Deadlines approaching fast; Christmas donations still needed for kids in need

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BATON ROUGE - Toys are finally pouring in at the East Baton Rouge Parish School District for their 'Elf Tree' program.

But, this year's list has nearly doubled from year's past. The school district wants to help every student in need, regardless of age.

"Because of that, we understand that the need is greater, so we expanded who was eligible for elf tree. So, not only is it elementary students, but we expanded to elementary, middle and high school students in our EBR district," says Letrece Griffin, with EBR Schools.

But, they're not the only program trying to save Christmas.

"Last year we helped about 2500 children, this year we're over 3000," Major Donald Tekautz with Salvation Army said.

The Salvation Army's 'Angel Tree' program is also taking on a long list, hoping to also serve children in need following a rough year.

"We've been through hurricanes, we've been through a pandemic. The economy's not what we would want it to be so, we're just helping more families. We're helping families now, that we've never helped in the past," Tekautz said.

And the community has stepped up for the season of giving, quickly answering the call to provide toys for almost 1600 kids who still hadn't been adopted for the season through the Salvation Army's program.

At the EBR school board office, more than 100 toys have been donated for the Elf Tree program.

"Because we've had more than double than we usually have, we're amazed at the support that we've gotten because it's more than we usually have had in the past so we are just so thrilled and grateful for the support we've gotten," Griffin said.


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