A mother of two young girls in the Portland area wrote in a note to the Portland Press Herald Toy Fund that she tries hard to teach her children not to focus on material things.

“They get it for the most part,” she wrote. “All throughout the year they hear: ‘We don’t have money for this. … We can’t afford that.’ ”

But she also knows that all of her efforts won’t keep them from feeling forgotten, and maybe unworthy, if they don’t have presents to unwrap on Christmas.

“Come Christmastime, they believe that Santa brings stuff to the good kids. Let me tell you, they are really good kids – kind, respectful, loving, humble.

“So, I am requesting help to fill this expectation. … And, truly, I appreciate greatly that your program is here to help my family and countless others to bring the magic of Christmas to the kids. Thank you so very much!! Have a blessed, happy, Merry Christmas.”

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

The fund – now in its 66th year – helps needy families in Cumberland, York, Sagadahoc, Lincoln and Knox counties.

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 $108,828.30.

DONATIONS

Maine Medical Center, Engineering Services $250

Merry Christmas from Lexxi, Pennie and Paws $500

Where it is needed most $500

Friends of Bow Street Market $150

In memory of my parents – Ronnie Small $250

For the hardworking nurses & staff of MMC&MMP Surgical Care – MMP Surgical Care Surgeons $2,000

Purpoodock Women’s Golf Association $50

Merry Christmas from the LaMagnas $100

Merry Christmas! $500

Donated on behalf of Unum NCG Implementation Team $50

With hope for ever brighter Christmases $150

In loving memory of my dad, Jim Wallace $100

Hi $25

In honor of a grandnephew’s first Christmas $100

Happy Holidays! Madison, Nicholas & Ryan Buckley $150

In memory of Dick Hawes…$100

The Millers $100

Happy Holidays – The Kingsleys $25

Jenifer Stewart $50

Richard Merk $50

Adah Ginn $100

Barbara Marr $75

Merry Christmas – Nancy Lentz $25

In memory of Herb & Winnie, Larry & Sylvia $100

Lori Cook $150

John Wilson $50

In memory of Becky and Arnold $100

Gina, Stefano and Nicola $300

Marilyn Weeman $25

Nancy Tryzelaar $100

Mary Kathleen Sullivan $30

With fondness for children at Christmas – Jane McCarthy LCSW $50

Lesley Ewald $50

John & Gloria Tewhey $100

The Campbell Family – Richard, Cindy, Robert & Riley $100

Richard and Rose Coffin $30

Jane Rowell $100

In memory of Pastor Nancy $25

Sandra Matheson $100

Merry Christmas from Madi, Sydney, Piper and Hudson $100

Diana Washburn $50

Francis Maderia $50

In memory of Bernard and Bertha Garland from their girls $100

Order of AHEPA, Portland Chapter $300

In memory of Effie Comas who loved children $100

On behalf of Vicki $25

Merry Christmas – Alise and Scott Koocher $250

Merry Christmas from Keith and Barbara Sawyer $100

In lieu of local Christmas cards – The Gierings $25

Thank You – Claudia King $150

Wesley Lovejoy $50

Carol Nadeau $50

Elizabeth Allegretta $100

Today’s total: $8,260

Total year to date: $108,828.30

*Correction from 12/20 listings: Susan Wilbur should have been listed Susan Wilbur Collier

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