The calendar days are counting down, and Christmas (gasp!) will be here before you know it. Yes, the music is already ever-present on the radio, and various TV stations are around-the-clock Christmas (some selections much better than others).

Nevertheless, the holiday season, it can be said, is officially here.

It certainly seems that the arrival is earlier year-after-year. As children it seemed that it wasn’t until the snow was falling or school let out that the holidays were even given consideration.

Now the advertising stream ramps up shortly after Halloween, despite the belief of many that it should wait until Remembrance Day has passed. (Tell that to the bozos at the Montreal mall that flew in Santa Claus at 11 am on Sat., Nov. 11.)

The point, as it was made a few lines above, is that the season is here.

With it comes the increased demand on various agencies that help to prevent the down on their luck from going without at Christmastime.

Already, Bob Weagant and his merry band of helpers are trumpeting the need of the North Dundas Christmas Fund.

There is no doubt demand as 2016’s drive produced 150 snowsuits to keep area children warm during the winter, and 200 baskets of food put together to fill bellies during the holidays.

Barkley’s Shoes and Accessories is doing its part to help with the sale of wool, fleeced-lined mittens, with a portion earmarked for the fund.

The House of Lazarus and Community Food Share have also teamed with Winchester BMR to provide “heat for the holidays” through a donation drive to purchase wood-burning logs for food bank clients who rely on woodstoves or fireplaces during the winter months.

Campaigns are also underway in neighbouring municipalities, all with the same end goal in mind — helping those who need it.

Naomi’s Family Resource Centre is also in the midst of its “Wrapped in Courage” initiative. Though not related to the holidays it comes during Woman Abuse Prevention Month in November. Two downtown stores — Barkley’s and Main Street Clothing Company — are selling purple scarves as a sign that woman and children affected by violence are not alone.

Each cause is no doubt worthy, and it is a near certainty that the greater community will step up to help out.

Because neighbours in need, need not be forgotten.