Charities and organizations are beginning to accept donations for the holidays. Be a Santa’s Helper and give to those in need.

Angel Tree

Help a child and visit the “Families First Angel Tree” at Saks Fifth Avenue Off 5th at Silver Sands Premium Outlets. A description of each child and gift suggestions will be available. Wrapped gifts must be returned to the Information Center, between Michael Kors and DKNY, no later than Dec. 17.  Call 654-9771.

Shelter House donations for holiday meals

Shelter House is currently accepting donations for its annual holiday food drive. They accept non-perishable food items at any time. Due to storage capacity, perishable items such as hams, turkeys, bread and fresh fruits and vegetables will only be accepted Dec. 18 for Christmas meals. All donations should be delivered to 102 Buck Drive in Fort Walton Beach between 8 a.m. and 5 p.m. Monday through Friday.

Suggested donations include turkeys, hams, mashed potato mix, stuffing mix, gravy, soups for casseroles, cranberry sauce, crispy fried onions, fresh fruits and vegetables, pie filling, pie crusts, condensed milk and laundry baskets. Gift cards are always welcome. Call 850-243-1201.

Food Drive

Opportunity Inc., the Okaloosa Walton Homeless Continuum of Care s teaming up with Boshamps Seafood and Oyster House in Destin to collect canned and non-perishable food items to distribute to families in need in our community. Drop off locations include Boshamps, Apex Communications, Vintage Title and Escrow in Destin, the Sleep Center and Rick’s Crab Trap in Fort Walton Beach. Items may also be brought to Opportunity Place, 305 Lovejoy Road in Fort Walton Beach.

For more information or to make a donation, contact Opportunity Inc. at 409-3070 or email

Tee Off for Toys

People are asked to donate new, unwrapped toys or gift cards with a value of $15 or more and in exchange guests can play Sandestin’s golf courses for just the green and golf car fee, $20, Dec. 7 and 8 at its public courses, Raven Golf Club, Baytowne Golf Club and The Links Golf Club.

All toys and donations will be given to Harvest House’s “Hope for Holidays” and Children in Crisis programs, both benefiting children and families in need this holiday season.

Local residents, guests and visitors are welcome to participate. Tee times are available all day and can be made at 267-8155.

Coats for Kids at Christmas

United Way of Okaloosa-Walton Counties will hold the annual Coats for Kids drive to help children in need in Okaloosa and Walton Counties.

To participate, drop off new or gently used coats through Dec. 10 at Bank of America, BB&T, BBVA Compass Banks, Beach Community Banks, Coastal Bank and Trusts, Destin Cleaners, Eglin Federal Credit Unions, French Laundry, Gold’s Gyms, all Publix’s, Regions Banks, Summit Banks, Trustmark Banks and the YMCAs in Fort Walton Beach, Destin, Niceville and Crestview. Call 243-0315 or email for more locations.

Participating United Way Agencies will distribute the coats to any child at no cost to the family.