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Onondaga County free Christmas assistance.

Several charities and churches in the Onondaga County area provide free Christmas programs to the needy. The assistance is wide ranging. There may free Christmas gifts from Toys for Tots or Angel Tree, holiday meals (including Easter and Thanksgiving), food, gift certificates, and many other items. Some charities only help those households with children, and other holiday programs focus on the elderly or homebound.

Thousands of families across Onondaga County as well as the city of Syracuse tend to receive free toys or Christmas gifts, with a focus on low income households, the elderly, and single parents. Many more families may be given a Christmas or even Thanksgiving meal. The demand for help is very high, and the application period will usually open up in the fall. Any assistance is first come and served for qualified families.

The agencies will normally want proof of income and will not duplicate services with other local charities. This means that only one charity can be contacted for some type of toy or meal, and if a resident applies at multiple locations then they may be disqualified for receiving holiday help. Or if not qualified, referrals may be given.

Syracuse City Police Department
Address is 511 South State Street
Syracuse, New York 13202
Telephone: 315-442-5210
Provides a Christmas Food Baskets for those that are ineligible for other aid. A focus is on senior citizens and singles.

The Salvation Army of Onondaga County
Main address is 677 South Salina Street
Syracuse, New York 13202
Every year there are thousands of holiday food baskets passed out. They also offer additional financial help for paying heating bills during the Christmas time frame, have free Christmas toys from Angel Tree, clothing, and delivery of a holiday meal to the elderly or disabled. Free Christmas turkey dinners are served too. There are also other distribution sites in Onondaga County.





Baldwinsville Volunteer Center
44 Oswego Street
Baldwinsville, NY 13027
Assistance, such as gifts and toys, is only for children in the Baldwinsville school district.

Rescue Mission
Location is 148 Gifford Street
Syracuse, NY
Dial 315-701-3896 for applications.
Shut-ins and the needy can sign up for free home-delivered meals on Thanksgiving or Christmas.

PEACE, Inc has multiple locations
217 South Salina Street, Syracuse, New York 13202, For hours, dial 315-437-7071.
215 West Manlius, East Syracuse, NY
202 South Beech Street, Syracuse New York, 13202. Call 315-470-3325
The charity runs the adopt a family program. They have multiple locations in the county. There may also be clothes, small gifts or presents, gift cards for Christmas or holiday meals and other resources. More on holiday assistance programs from PEACE.





Dewitt Memorial Funeral Home Holiday Bike Giveaway
4901 Jamesville Road
Jamesville, New York
Only bikes are offered year round.

Toys for Tots in Onondaga County
Donations are used and the Christmas program is run by the USMC. Families can apply at local churches, libraries, community centers, charities and more. There may be games, books, toys, Christmas gifts for kids under the age of 14, unwrapped presents and more. Learn more or apply here.

Faith Lutheran Church Pantry
6142 Route 31
Cicero, NY 13039
Christmas help is for northern Onondaga County, and includes presents, coats, and hot meals. Free food from the pantry may give out ingredients for Easter, Thanksgiving, or Christmas meals.

Catholic Charities
There are several churches in the region. They help the low income, immigrants, and women with free hot meals, including at Thanksgiving and Christmas. Food boxes, Easter meals, financial help, birthday or Christmas toys for kids, and more is offered. Continue with Onondaga County Catholic Charities assistance programs.

Fabius-Pompey Outreach - Town of Pompey
Main address is 7404 Academy Street
Pompey, New York 13063




Brewerton United Methodist Church
5395 Orangeport Road
Brewerton, New York 13029
The charity has Holiday Baskets, fresh meals, and small presents at Thanksgiving as well as Christmas.


By Jon McNamara

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