The Portland Press Herald Toy Fund is using donations from readers to provide toys to about 7,000 Maine children who might otherwise not receive holiday gifts because of hardships faced by their parents.

The fund – now in its 65th year – is accepting applications for toys from needy families in Cumberland, York, Sagadahoc, Lincoln and Knox counties. Applications can be downloaded at pressheraldtoyfund.org or picked up at the Welcome Center desk on the fifth floor of One City Center in Portland. Call 791-6672 to have one mailed to you.

Donations to help buy the toys can be made on the website or by writing checks to the Portland Press Herald Toy Fund and mailing them to the fund at P.O. Box 7310, Portland, ME 04112. The campaign’s fundraising goal this year is $250,000. The total raised so far is $40,580.10.

Here is a letter from one such applicant:

Dear Press Herald Toy Fund,

I am a single father of a 5-month-old baby girl. At this time, her mother is not involved in our life. I am out of work due to being laid off from my full-time painting job. I am currently seeking employment of any kind. I am seeking assistance from the toy fund so I am able to make my baby’s first Christmas a beautiful memory.

I appreciate your assistance. God bless. Thank you.

Unemployed single dad

DONATIONS:

Michael, Kathy & Emily Camire ………………………………………………………$30

John & Gail Erath …………………..$25

In loving memory of my mother, Thelma Gould …………………………$25

Anonymous ………………………….…$20

David & Susan Wheatland ..…$100

Scott Schnapp & Heidi Almy …………………………………………………………$100

In memory of Bill Murphy ……..$30

In loving memory of Belinda & Leslie Gray ………………………………$50

In loving memory of A Bailey Wentworth from his family ..…$50

In memory of my husband, Davis S Waite ……………………………………$25

Rich & Kathy Moran ………………$150

From Molly the Collie..David Lloyd ………………………………………………..$100

Merry Christmas…Susan Gross ……………………………………………………….$50

For Lois, from Eric, Laura, Sarah and Karen ……………………………….$50

In memory of Ora Brown ………$50

In memory of Granzo ………..…$250

Merry X-Mas ………………………….$100

Merry Christmas …………………..…$50

Be positive! Patricia Red

For Dad, who loved to share with kids at Christmas ……………….…$100

Merry Christmas! Edna & Richard ……………………………………………..…$100

A worthy Effort! Donna Barmore… ………………………………………………..$100

In loving memory of our great grandparents Emmons & Joan Johnson from Daniel, Elizabeth and Sean ……………………………..…$150

Mary & Richard Lobuglio ……….$50

In loving memory of Linda Jellerson Mills ……………………………….…$50

In memory of June & Tommy…$50

Anonymous …………………………..$100

In memory of Joseph Chiasson who always gave to the Fund, Nola J Chiasson ………………………$25

In memory of Jimmy & Kay….…$10

In honor of Laura & Julian…….$100

In memory of Susan Donnell Konkel, from Harry Konkel………….$500

Craig Linscott………………………..$200

In memory of Richard Umbel ……………………………………………………….$200

Peter & Kristen Lemay…………….$25

In memory of Elizabeth Ross from Kevin & Judy McDonough…….$100

From: Kate, Sarah & Ben………$200

Ivy Rebekah Lodge 5 Independent Order of Odd Fellows ……$25

For the children, Arnold & Susan Harmon ………………………………….$100

In honor of our parents: Eli & Anna Bourque and David & Hazel Corbin ……………………………………$250

Anonymous ………………………….$500

Thank you for running the Toy Fund!.Suzanne & Cornelius McGinn .……………………………………..$500

Merry Christmas from Jim & Kathy Ryan ………………………………….$100

Anonymous …………………………….$25

Eileen & Wally Garroway………..$50

From Flossie the Cat……………….$75

Danuta Barnard……………………..$100

In memory of Terri Tarbox……$100

James & Mary Currie……………….$25

In memory of Philip Dion from Aunt Margaret………………………….$25

In loving memory of our parents: Bill & Toni McDonough and Harold & Vicki Bragdon, from Bill & Carol Bragdon……………………………………$50

Robert Miniutti……………………….$100

In memory of Carter Lebel, from Don & Cindy Marsh……………….$200

Anonymous…………………………..$500

Year-to-date: $40,580.10