Local organizations are holding a variety of food and toy drives during the holiday season.

Local organizations are holding a variety of food and toy drives during the holiday season.

For seven years, service clubs in Powell — including Powell Sertoma, Rotary and Kiwanis clubs — have joined to raise funds for holiday dinners for families in Delaware County.

During that time, they’ve raised more than $25,000 to buy more than 650 meals a year.

“To continue this project, we are asking for help,” said Larry Coolidge. Kroger supplies the dinners at cost of $42. Each dinner will feed a family of four and includes a cooked turkey, dressing, mashed potatoes, gravy, rolls and pumpkin pie.”

All of the money donated is used to provide a complete holiday meal to families in need in the county, said Coolidge.

“The meals are picked up by area churches, organizations and groups that we have been working with for year,” said Coolidge, “and they in turn deliver the meals to families they have been helping throughout the year during these trying economic times. This system provides privacy for the family and assures the meals go to needy families.”

To donate, send a check to Powell Sertoma Club, 78 W. Olentangy St., Powell, Ohio 43065.

Other local efforts include:

• Liberty Township Fire Department is holding a toy drive through Thursday, Dec. 22.

People may drop off new, unwrapped toys in the lobbies of Fire Station 321, at 7761 Liberty Road, or Fire Station 322, at 10150 Sawmill Parkway.

The department will deliver the items to People in Need Inc. of Delaware County, 138 Johnson Drive, Delaware.

The department has offered this opportunity for more than 20 years because “most folks know where to find a fire station,” Fire Chief Tim Jensen said. “It is a trusted drop-off location and we, the fire/EMS service, have been doing it long enough that it is ingrained in the public.”

Offering this service is “a small way that we can give back to the community,” said Jensen, “and it is the right thing to do.”

• Orange Township Fire Department helps collect items for the Holiday Clearinghouse drive help annually by People in Need Inc. of Delaware County.

Donations of non-perishable food items, health care items, unwrapped new toys, clothing and gift cards may be dropped off at Fire Station 361 at 7700 Gooding Blvd., or at Fire Station 362 at 7307 S. Old State Road, through Saturday, Dec. 10.

“I am fortunate to be part of this amazing community that helps others in many different ways,” said Lt. Scott Rice. “Also, being on the fire department and having the commitment to serve the public, it seems a natural extension to participate in such worthy causes as PIN.”

In 2010, the Holiday Clearinghouse assisted 457 families, 1,104 children, 190 homebound seniors or disabled persons, and distributed more than 18,000 meals, Rice said. In fiscal year 2011, contributions helped PIN provide nearly $500,000 in assistance to more than 16,000 neighbors in the county.

“Unfortunately, the numbers (of people needing help) seem to be rising,” said Rice. “The unemployment rate is rising and layoffs or job cuts could affect any of us at anytime. PIN is a wonderful short-term service that is available to those of us in Delaware County to help us get through those rough times we may incur.”

• Genoa Township Fire Department is holding its annual toy and food drive through Saturday, Dec. 31.

Items can be dropped off at the Genoa Township Fire Department, 7049 Big Walnut Road, Galena.

“We are collecting new, unwrapped toys for all age groups, nonperishable food, gift cards and cash donations,” said Fire Chief Gary Honeycutt.

The department has been assisting local families in the surrounding area since Christmas of 2004, Honeycutt said.

Donations go to local families identified through the churches, school system and Big Walnut Friends Who Share, with excess toys and food donated to Big Walnut Friends Who Share.

“The need has quadrupled since last year,” Honeycutt said. “We were able to assist 20 families last year and this year, just the schools alone have over 80 families needing assistance. The count does not include the local churches or Big Walnut Friends Who Share.”

• Powell police and administrative offices are collecting new, unwrapped toys for Toys for Tots through Wednesday, Dec. 7, at 47 Hall St., Powell. Powell has offered this collection service for the U.S. Marine Corps Toys for Tots program for a number of years.