For the second year in a row, an anonymous donor has pushed the Santa Fund toward its $175,000 goal with a $50,000 donation.
The donation puts the fund to within $2,235.97 of the goal, with a running total of $172,764.03 as of Wednesday.
The Santa Fund, established in 1894 by The Daily Progress, collects donations to provide shoes, clothing, medicine, eyeglasses, school supplies and other essentials to children in need.
The program offers help all year long rather than just during the holiday season.
“This particular donor cares a lot of about children in the area and used to donate about $20,000 each year, but doubled the amount when we increased our goal last year,” said Ravi Respeto, president of The United Way of Greater Charlottesville, which administers the fund.
The fund is sponsored by The Daily Progress and WINA-AM radio.
Respeto said the donor wishes to remain anonymous.
“It’s a significant gift and it sends a great message that people in this community really do care about helping schoolchildren all year long and not just at the holiday,” Respeto said.
The region is known for its technology workforce and for being affluent, but Respeto said that is not the case for nearly a quarter of area students.
“I think people don’t realize that 25% of Charlottesville-area kids are living in poverty,” Respeto said. “The Santa Fund is there all year to help them out, whether it’s with shoes or eyeglasses or a jacket.”
The fund serves children in the city of Charlottesville and the counties of Albemarle, Buckingham, Fluvanna, Greene, Louisa, Madison, Nelson and Orange.
The annual fundraiser typically winds up in mid-January.
Please mail all contributions to: Santa Fund, 806 E. High St., Charlottesville, VA 22902. Donations also may be made at thesantafund.org.
» For Gus, Fluffy and Etta, $102.56
» John and Margaret Wheeler, $500
» In memory of Helen and Blaine Gullett, $50
» In gratitude for Riley, Madison and Elaine, $50
» Given in memory of Nicky Theodore and all her beloved dogs, cats and horses, $50
» In honor of Dobbie, $102.56
» For Gwen, Coco and Maisie, $150
» In loving memory of Tracey Welch, our parents, Paul and Rosa Taylor, and in honor of our son Paul Welch, $1,000
» Robert Thompson, $300
» Anonymous, $50,000
» In honor of Micah and Max, $51.28
Today’s total: $52,356.40
Running total: $172,764.03
To reach goal: $2,235.97