By the Way: 'Tis the Season of Gratitude and Giving (News Nov. 2020)

In this edition of "By the Way," we are focusing on ways you can help support your community through the coming holiday season.

A Message from Our CEO, Brooke Smith

Brooke and her son, Brady, SmithDear Lebanon County Neighbors,

During this holiday season, I encourage you to focus on self-care and kindness. Our country is in uncharted waters right now during a time where tensions are high. People are concerned for their health, their loved ones, and their livelihood. Give grace to yourself and others as everyone is doing the best they can. Let us remember that we all intersect in this place we call home. We are stronger when we come together, working United, to find ways to lift each other up. 


Brooke Smith, CEO

“Be the Change You Wish to See in the World” - Gandhi

Lebanon Rescue MissionFood Drive for Local Seniors: AGAPE Christmas

Each year, Lebanon Rescue Mission puts together over 700 holiday bags for local seniors. You can help them with this project by picking up some of the following items, and delivering them to the Mission.

  • 1 pound canned ham: Major component of the gift bags. For one person, it can translate into 4 meals, whether for breakfast, lunch or dinner. Note these don't need to be name brand; Aldi and Walmart have reasonably-priced options.
  • Multi-packs of mixed fruit/applesauce: 3 or 6 pack 
  • Peanut Butter:  12 oz jars
  • Mac n’ Cheese:  Standard 12 oz box
  • Kids making cards for senior kitsStuffing mix: 6 oz box
  • Instant mashed potatoes: 8 oz package
  • Tuna: 5oz cans

Questions about this project? Contact Cathy Krause at the Lebanon Rescue Mission.

A special thank you to the Student Council at Southwest Elementary for making holiday cards to be included in the bags to bring extra joy to our local seniors in need.

Salvation ArmyBe an Angel for a Child in Need

The Salvation Army is making a plea to help rescue Christmas for those they serve. “I know that during this time of need, we can count on the Lebanon community to help us bring hope to these people who are struggling to keep it together for themselves and for their families,” said. Lts. Marlon & Ivonne Rodriguez, Corps Officers for The Salvation Army of Lebanon.

Salvation Army is asking individuals, small businesses, and churches in Lebanon to join in the mission to “Rescue Christmas” this holiday season through the Angel Tree program. Currently there are 400 families in need of Angels.
Individuals can request a tag from the Salvation Army of Lebanon, or visit a participating business or church to pick up a tag, shop for a specific child in need based on the requested item(s) on the tag, and return the gifts back to The Salvation Army of Lebanon. The Salvation Army will then distribute those gifts to the respective families.

“We are grateful for the support of our local businesses and churches and we do need your help,” said Lt. Ivonne Rodriguez, Corps Officer of the Salvation Army of Lebanon. “Without their support, we wouldn’t be able to serve the children of our community who deserve a wonderful Christmas.”

Another variation of the Angel Tree program which will be offered for the Lebanon community is Adopt-a-Family, where participants can choose to “adopt” an entire family and purchase gifts for them, as well as provide groceries for a special Christmas Day meal. For those who prefer not to shop in stores due to COVID-19 can purchase gifts via the Salvation Army of Lebanon’s Walmart Registry For Good. If they don’t know what to pick from the registry, they can purchase a Walmart Gift Card from the registry, which The Salvation Army staff will use to shop for gifts for the children and families in need.

All collected gifts will be distributed to families in December. With the community’s support, The Salvation Army of Lebanon expects to serve over 600 families/850 children this year, compared to 500 families/680 children who were served last year. Currently, 400 families need a Guardian Angel to help.

For more information, or to sign up as an Angel for a child or family in need, email Lt. Ivonne Rodriguez, or call the Salvation Army at 717-273-2655

PA Breast Cancer CoalitionHelp Support Women Newly Diagnosed with Breast Cancer

For over 25 years, the PA Breast Cancer Coalition (PBCC) has been the premier organization in Pennsylvania that represents, supports and serves breast cancer survivors and their families through educational programming, legislative advocacy and breast cancer research grants. The PBCC, a statewide, nonprofit organization, provides information and services to women and families facing breast cancer in PA. We have one mission: to find a cure for breast cancer now… so our daughters don’t have to.

The PBCC supports women newly diagnosed with breast cancer through our FREE Friends Like Me Care Package program. The package contains educational resources, small gifts, cosmetics and a reminder that you are not alone. Each care package is personalized to the woman’s situation and treatment plan, and contains information, inspiration and support at a time when they need it most. Friends Like Me Care Packages are free to the recipient as long as she has been diagnosed within the last six months and lives in Pennsylvania, and are delivered to the recipient’s door via UPS.

Care packagesFriends Like Me Care Package Items:

  • Mini hand sanitizer
  • Face masks
  • Tissue packs
  • Caffeine-free tea (like peppermint, chamomile, ginger, lemon)
  • Eye masks
  • Unscented wet wipes
  • Magazines
  • Sudoku puzzle books, other puzzle books
  • Adult coloring books
  • Icy cool towels
  • Hats
  • Aquaphor healing ointment
  • Accupressure Wrist Bands (Sea Bands)
  • Pretty notecards for messages to family/friends
  • Breast Cancer Books/Literature

In 2019, PBCC sent out over 1,050 care packages. We are hoping to help even more newly diagnosed women in the future. That’s where your help is greatly appreciated! If you are interested in donating items to our Friends Like Me Care Package program, you are welcome to mail donations directly to our office at: 2397 Quentin Road Suite B Lebanon, PA 17042.

For more information please visit or email Kate at

Lebanon Gives on Giving Tuesday20 Lebanon County Nonprofits Are Joining Forces for a Single Day of Giving

What is Giving Tuesday?

#GivingTuesday is a global movement that unleashes the power of people and organizations to transform their communities and the world. Thanksgiving is a day to be grateful for all that we have. Black Friday, Small Business Saturday, and Cyber Monday are days designated to find great deals and support business. Giving Tuesday was established to give back.

Lebanon Gives - December 1, 2020

Giving Tuesday was first introduced to Lebanon County by the Lebanon Valley Family YMCA. Over the past few years, they have reached out to expand the initiative in order to make the biggest impact possible locally for this designated day of giving. This year, Lebanon Gives represents 20 organizations who are working to make a difference for the communities they serve. This provides an opportunity for individuals and businesses to make a gift to one, more, or even all participating nonprofits.

Lebanon Gives participating organizations

Follow "Lebanon Gives" on Facebook.

Questions about #LebanonGives? Contact Flame Vo.

Kits of Comfort & JoyComing Soon: Kits of Comfort & Joy

A trip to the emergency room is stressful for anyone, especially children who don't necessarily understand the situation around them. Each year, approximately 100 children who enter the WellSpan Good Samaritan emergency room find themselves in need of crisis intervention. At United Way, we are partnering with Lebanon County Crisis Intervention to develop "Kits of Comfort & Joy." These kits will contain items to help children remain calm and as comfortable as possible.

More information coming next month about how you can help!
Questions about Kits of Comfort & Joy? Contact Dede Carmichael.

Greektown Thanksgiving


Community Christmas Meal