In an effort to help countless children and families in need, Immaculate Heart of Mary Parish, Corpus Christi Parish and Catholic Charities Maine are working together to host Jolly Gifts, an initiative that aims to warm hearts and offer support to community members as they prepare for Christmas.

All are encouraged to bring a new, unwrapped toy or gift to the Jolly Gifts displays at locations listed below. The gifts will be distributed to young children up through early teens. Popular items include board games, arts and crafts kits, model cars, sports items and dolls. Cash donations are also accepted.

Donations will be accepted through Sunday, Dec. 12.

Collection bins can be found at:

• Sacred Heart Church, 8 Sacred Heart Place, Auburn;

• St. Philip Church, 2365 Turner Road, Auburn;

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• Notre Dame du Perpetual Secours Church, 116 Silver St., Waterville; and

• St. John the Baptist Church, 26 Monument St., Winslow.

Participants also can drop off donations from 8:30 a.m. to 3:30 p.m. Monday through Thursday at the offices of Immaculate Heart of Mary Parish, 24 Sacred Heart Place in Auburn, or from 8 a.m. to noon Monday through Thursday at the offices of Corpus Christi Parish, 17 South Garand St. in Winslow.

All items donated will be given to Catholic Charities Maine, which will distribute them to families in need that have been referred to the organization by community partners.

“We see the power of giving every day at Catholic Charities Maine,” said Bill Wood of the organization’s Parish Social Ministry, according to a news release from the Roman Catholic Diocese of Portland. “To see these children and families smiling as they receive these gifts is so impactful. You realize that these are more than gifts, they are feeding the spirit as well.”

For more information on Jolly Gifts, contact Wood at 207-956-1457 or [email protected].

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