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Institute features numerous options for holiday helping

In addition to making donations to the Giving at MIT Campaign, there are several options for charitable giving at MIT this holiday season, sponsored by the Campus Activities Complex, Campus Dining Services, Campus Police, CopyTech, the Panhellenic Association, the Parking and Transportation Office, the Public Service Center, Residential Life and Student Life Services and the MIT chapter of Habitat for Humanity. For more information or to volunteer, e-mail Sgt. Cheryl Vossmer of Campus Police at unless another contact is listed.

Giving Tree

Join a tree-lighting celebration of the Giving Tree in front of the Stratton Student Center at 4:30pm on Monday, Dec. 4. Aramark will provide hot chocolate, mulled cider and cookies. The Public Service Center (PSC) and the Panhellenic Association will hang children's names on the Giving Tree for people to "pick" and purchase holiday gifts. A box for donations of new toys, food and warm winter clothing for adults will be available. Anyone who can't attend but wants to participate in the Giving Tree should contact Heather Tricket of the PSC at to be matched with a child's wish list. This program runs from November 13-December 8.

Tickets for toys

If you have a parking ticket from MIT -- even an outstanding ticket -- take the ticket, along with a toy and receipt with the toy's price (which must be at least as much as the parking ticket fine), to the Parking and Transportation Office in Rm E32-105 from December 4-15 to have your ticket voided.

Toys, clothing and food

Brighten a homeless child's holiday with a new toy, new socks, gloves or a sweater. Wrapped gifts, with a sticker indicating the age range and gender of the recipient where appropriate, can be dropped off at campus dining services between December 4-15. Suggested toys are games, puzzles and all the wonderful (nonviolent) toys you remember receiving as a child. Drop-off locations are Courses and Lobdell in the Student Center, Walker, the Refresher Course at the Sloan School, the Dome Cafe in Building 10, CopyTech in Building 11 or the Student Services Center in Rm 11-120.

Clean clothing for adults and nonperishable foods can be dropped off at the following locations for distribution to homeless adults in the Cambridge area: the lobbies of Buildings 13, E23, E18/19, Sloan, NW21, W91, 34 and NE43. A special drop-off site will be set up in Lobby 10 on November 29 and 30 and December 11 and 15.

Holiday card sale

MIT's chapter of Habitat for Humanity is having a holiday greeting card fundraiser to collect $80,000 needed to build a Habitat house for a needy family. The group will sell black and white 5 1/2" by 4 1/4" blank holiday cards with a cover designed by Lara Kirkham, a sophomore in management. The cards, which show either a snowman or a reindeer with the greeting of "Happy Holiday" or "Season's Greetings," sell individually for $1.50 (including postage) or in packs of 10 (five each of two designs) for $10. They may be purchased in Lobby 10 or the Student Center from December 4-15, or purchased on line at and delivered to campus offices.

Hunger awareness

The Hunger Action Group is planning several events for Hunger Awareness Week (November 3-17), including a canned food drive to benefit CASPAR, a homeless shelter on Albany Street. Drop off cans in any of the undergraduate dorms or at the table in Lobby 10.

Cash donations are accepted in Lobby 10 to help CASPAR, and students can donate money from their meal cards in Lobby 10 and other campus locations today and tomorrow. The group will donate all proceeds beyond its target level to Oxfam America.

Volunteer at a soup kitchen on Saturday, Nov. 18. Meet at 11:30am on the first floor of the Student Center, then go with the group to serve food, help clean up and talk to CASPAR residents. The group volunteers at CASPAR and the United Methodist Church of All Nations in Boston once a month. For more information, send e-mail to or see the group's web site.

A version of this article appeared in MIT Tech Talk on November 15, 2000.

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