Every November, The St. Augustine Record, adds another title to their masthead – Community Fundraiser – as they manage and bring awareness to their annual Empty Stocking Fund to
raise funds for needy families of St. Augustine.
The Empty Stocking Fund is a longtime tradition of Morris Communications that started by simply sharing a story many, many years ago. In 1928, an unsigned opinion editorial from the December 12th issue of the Augusta Chronicle praised efforts in the Southwest Georgia town of Albany which had set up an “empty stocking fund” to benefit children. Inspired by the effort, two years later The Chronicle started its own Empty Stocking Fund raising $869.29 in the first year. Since then, The Chronicle continued to urge donations every year and in doing so, the fund grew and grew. Decades later, the program is now carried out to support local communities in nearly every market Morris Communications has a publication in.
The Record’s newly named Publisher, Tony Bernados will continue to carry on the company tradition in his new position. “Being new to The Record and St. Augustine, I’m curious to learn more about the true needs of our community and excited to see for myself the outpouring of support from our readers this year,” says Tony.
The fund is a 501(c)3 organization run entirely independent from The Record. There are no administrative fees, no costs. What goes in, goes out. “We absorb all the admin costs so that all the money donated goes to those in need,” he says.
While the program runs during the holiday time, the support isn’t just relative to Christmas toys. “We’ve purchased everything from eyeglasses to air conditioners,” he continues.
When the fund kicks off in November, The Record publishes a new story daily about a local family to show the varying levels of need within our community. Then the donations starting rolling in. All donations are counted daily and published in The Record the following day. Last year the fund raised over $100,000.
This Christmas St. Augustine will have an additional 400 families facing homelessness and special needs because of Hurricane Mattthew.
COCKTAIL RECEPTION FUNDRAISER
For additional fundraising efforts, this year The Record will host a cocktail reception fundraiser featuring a visit with Santa and Mrs. Claus, Food and Drink, Music, Silent Auction for Gingerbread Houses and other Local Items.
Friday, December 2, 2016
St. Augustine Record
One News Place, St. Augustine
6 p.m. to 9 p.m.
Tickets: $25 per person
Tickets available at www.staugustine.com/emptystocking
APPYING FOR ASSISTANCE
Families in need can apply for assistance by filling out an application at The Record or with partnering agencies like United Way and the Council on Aging. Deadlines to apply and disbursements will be announced in The St. Augustine Record when the fund kicks off in November.
To donate to the fund or help spread the word, you can learn more at www.staugustine.com