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FRAMINGHAM – The United Way of Tri-County (UWTC) expects to distribute more than 9,000 toys and gifts to area children this holiday season.

Hope for the Holidays, UWTCs annual holiday gift campaign works to help struggling families who cannot afford gifts for their children, enjoy a great holiday.

Throughout the year, the United Way of Tri-County direct service and hunger relief programs support vulnerable residents with everything from food, clothing, hot meals, school supplies and more. Now they need your help to make dreams come true.

Current economic conditions that include skyrocketing food prices and increasing electric, gas, and oil cost, are making it impossible for families teetering on the edge to purchase a doll or truck for their children at Christmas. But with help from local businesses, community groups, and individuals, local children can still have a holiday to remember!

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United Way partners with more than 25 local agencies like the Boys and Girls Club of MetroWest, Milford Youth Center, Advocates, and local YMCA’s, to get toys and holiday gifts into the hands of needy children. We support hard working parents who struggle to make ends meet, as well as families displaced and living in local shelters.

Businesses, churches, community groups, and individuals, sponsor a child or a family, and purchase gifts from their wish list. Others hold toy drives or make a financial donation, there are many ways to get involved.

“We provide gifts to kids who would otherwise go without,” said Director of Volunteerism at the United Way of Tri-County, Barbara LaGrenade. Barb also manages the Marlborough Community Cupboard food pantry and enrolls many of her clients in the Hope for the Holidays program. “We love this campaign, but we need help from the community. Our service area spans across MetroWest into Worcester County and includes thirty-five towns, and let me tell you, there is a lot of need out there.”

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“Sponsoring a child feels good, and who doesn’t like to help others during the holidays. Individuals, businesses, and families, come together and purchase clothing, pj’s, games, or a stuffed teddy bear, to make a child’s holiday wishes come true. Some local companies reach out to sponsor large groups of children, which we love, but we are running out of time,” LaGrenade concludes.

Below are deadlines for those who can help:
 To sponsor a child/family – December 13.
 To run a toy drive – December 9
 To make a financial donation – December 19.

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Information about how to become a sponsor, donor, or to run a gift drive can be found on the United Way of Tri-County website at . Questions can be directed to Barbara LaGrenade at 508.370.4902 or at .

If you would like to support the Hope for the Holidays financially, please donate online at or text H4H to 40403.

The United Way of Tri-County is a community building organization that brings people together to care for one another. We provide programs and services, connect volunteers, strengthen agencies, teach social responsibility, and meet the critical needs of the community with the help of people like you. For more information visit the United Way Website at

By editor

Susan Petroni is the former editor for SOURCE. She is the founder of the former news site, which as of May 1, 2023, is now a self-publishing community bulletin board. The website no longer has a journalist but a webmaster.