Donations are currently being accepted for the Valley Empty Stocking Fund, which will ensure local families have a merry Christmas.

Money collected for this fund will be used to purchase vouchers from Kmart, where families can buy presents, and Reid's to cover the cost of Christmas dinner. According to a press release, the Valley Empty Stocking Fund helped 95 families in 2012, which equaled to a total of 398 people thanks to more than $15,920 in donations.

Mary Opalewski, who is with the Valley Empty Stocking Fund, said that it was started in 1973 by the LBC American Legion, LBC Lions Club and the LBC Jaycees. They have assisted as many as 240 families in one year, she added.

Opalewki said that they have continued this effort for 40 years because they are aware of the need in their community, and are happy to help put smiles on the faces of local children on Christmas Day.

Monetary donations can be mailed to P.O. Box 517, Langley, S.C., 29834 until Dec. 21.