The New Milford Social Services Department has issued a reminder of ways the public can reach out to help those in need this holiday season.

Adopt a child or family through the Santa Fund.

Donors are asked to buy a new outfit and new toy/gift of the child's choice.

For information, call Nancy Camp at 860-354-3286.

Purchase gift certificates, jewelry, sports goods, CDs and other goods to be used as teen gifts for the department's "Sibling Shopping" event the first weekend of December.

Gift certificate may be purchased for pizza restaurants, coffee shops, movie theaters, teen clothing stores and general merchandise stores in $10 to $15 denominations.

Gifts are due to Social Services by Dec. 3.

Organize a food drive at one's office, club, church, family gathering, or use as an alternate gift for holiday gatherings.

Nonperishable items should be delivered to the Social Services office at 40 Main St., with items to be given to the food bank.

The greatest needs include tuna, canned meats, soups, canned fruits and vegetables, stew, pasta sauce, peanut butter, paper towels, cereal, crackers and dish soap.

Help neighbors cope with emergency needs by making a donation to the Good Samaritan Fund of Social Services.

All donations go directly to basic needs support of New Milford families and special Social Services programs.

Purchase a gift certificate to be given to a disabled adult for the holidays.

The greatest requests are for food, gas, pharmacy or Wal-Mart gift cards.

Purchase children's hats, mittens, scarves or gloves; these are distributed with gifts at the holidays.

Items must be delivered to Social Services by Dec. 13.

Purchase toys or gift cards for children and help the New Milford Stuff-a-Cruiser event at Wal-Mart on Dec. 7.

Buy adult gloves and socks to be distributed to homeless and struggling adults.

Hold a holiday party and determine an "alternate gift" from one of the above needs to ask your guests to bring.

Or, do a collection that can be given to the Good Samaritan Fund.

If an event is large, contact Social Services in advance.

Purchase toiletries that can be distributed to families with holiday gifts.

Items needed include toothpaste, deodorant, shampoo, lotion and soap.

These must be delivered to Social Services by Dec. 13.

For more information, call Social Services at 860-355-6079.