How you can help get a Christmas tree to a Vermont family in need

Published: Nov. 26, 2021 at 3:01 PM EST|Updated: Nov. 26, 2021 at 4:07 PM EST
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RUTLAND, Vt. (WCAX) - While some people are still digesting their Thanksgiving meals, others are getting ready for what could be a financially difficult Christmas. One program helps by donating Christmas trees to those in need.

Most people in the Rutland area know about the Rotary’s Christmas trees for sale in Main Street Park. And for the second year in a row, people can donate a free Christmas tree to families in need.

“We’ve been selling Christmas trees here in Rutland for 60 years and we are really excited about our Gift a Tree program,” said Arwen Turner, the president of the Rotary Club of Rutland.

Beginning Saturday morning, about 1,000 Christmas trees will fill the stands.

Last year, the Rotary Club of Rutland worked with BROC Community Action to place about 130 trees in homes of people who couldn’t afford them.

“The need for the trees is even more important this year because none of us expected the pandemic to be languishing the way it is,” said Tom Donahue, the CEO of BROC Community Action.

Before Thanksgiving, BROC Community Action had distributed 66 out of 80 vouchers to provide trees for those who need them.

Donahue says it’s important for families to have this tradition without feeling like they have to cut money from their food or fuel budget.

“It’s something that a lot of families just automatically take for granted that they go get their tree. It really would be unfortunate to think that local families might not have the opportunity,” Donahue said.

Vouchers are given so people can pick out their tree anonymously alongside others buying their beautiful balsam.

Trees are $50 to donate.

This year, decorations and tree stands will also be available.

“Folks that might not be able to afford a tree might also need some support with tree stands and decorations,” Turner said.

Donations will be accepted through Monday and can only be done online. Click here for all the details.

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