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 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 $87,594.10.

Here is a letter from one such applicant:

Dear Press Herald Toy Fund,

We are a family of five. I work full time while managing four kids. Finances are challenging due to my 10-year-old having uncontrolled Type 1 Diabetes, which has required me to take off a fair amount of time to care for him and take him to doctor’s appointments the last six months.

Any help you can give us will be greatly appreciated.

Single mother with son in need of care


From Sam and Faith Beal, in honor of Willy and Sammy $100

Holiday greetings from Donald Starr and Serena Wakelin-Starr $200

Stella and the Super Girls! From Michelle DelTergo $200

For Danny $25

In honor of Susan Penna Bernier $125

In memory of L. Philip Bernier $125

Walter $25

Fred and Jane Bopp $100

Wishing you all a Merry Christmas! The Smiths $200

Merry Christmas from the Cross family $50

Wishing everyone a Happy Holiday season! $100

To help make Christmas a little more merry $100

In memory of Barbara Bolster, who loved Christmas, from Catherine Nodine $50

Merry Christmas and Happy New Year! $100

Happy Holidays to the children of Portland, from Margaret Groban $100

In loving memory of David Davis Sr. and David Davis Jr., loved and missed by Anna, Dianna and Mike $35

In memory of Mom Judy and Aunt Elsine from Michelle Meggison $250

To the children from William Vaughan $100

Wishing you all good things in 2015, from Suzanne Fox $100

Leonard and Ann Guralnick $25

In loving memory of our parents, from the children of John and Germaine Dorazio $100

In memory of Joe and Nora Nappi $100

Merry Christmas from Richard and Sandy Magnacca $350

In memory of “Peanut” and Barbara Kendall $50

In memory of Jay and “Bobby” Lord $50

In memory of Deb + BK and from J, T and A $300

To all those who need more joy and love! $100

In memory of John W. and John M. Sullivan from Lynne Sullivan $100

Merry Christmas to all! From Ronald Quake $500

Hoping all kids can share the joy of the holidays! $30

Our little bit of help for a better Christmas $500

Sharing the spirit of the holidays – Wendy Miller $100

In memory of Jim Boyle, who died on Dec. 19, 2014 $100

Year to date: $87,594.10