Before we get caught up in the hustle and bustle of the season, let’s take a moment to consider those in our community who don’t have a place to call home for the holidays. According to the American Community Survey released in September 2010, the poverty level in Boulder County rose from 9.5 percent in 2000 to 14 percent in 2009.

The Emergency Family Assistance Association (EFAA) has been meeting our community’s basic needs since 1918. It helps families, people with disabilities and seniors by providing assistance with food, rent, furniture, utilities, transportation, minor medical expenses, emergency and transitional housing, and resource referrals.

In the past year alone, EFAA has conducted 11,282 face-to-face interviews with more than 4,000 separate families – an increase in caseload of 28 percent year-over-year. It distributed 503,715 pounds of food worth $851,278 to 2,500 different households – an increase of 44 percent over the year prior.

Won’t you help? Because of strong volunteerism and in-kind donations, 85 percent of every dollar donated to EFAA goes to direct services. Every contribution, large or small, matters. Every dollar goes a long way.

Finish out 2010 by making our community a better place. Visit www.efaa.org, call 303.442.3042 or mail your tax-deductible donation to EFAA, 1575 Yarmouth Ave., Boulder, CO 80304-0564.