Maryland Bar Bulletin
Publications : Bar Bulletin : January 2006

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HCBA Helps Spread the Joys (and Toys) of the Holiday Season
By Bryan Nichols

HCBA

Howard County Bar Association President Tim McCrone (left) presents a check to Grassroots Executive Director Andrea S. Ingram

The Howard County Bar Association (HCBA) brightened the holiday season for the less-fortunate within its community last month by donating items to Grassroots, a private, non-profit human service agency that provides multi-service crisis intervention for central Maryland.

With a high stack of boxes in his grasp, HCBA President Tim McCrone personally presented the organization with a variety of toys, canned goods, turkeys and $860 on December 19. A Grassroots' client immediately sifted through one of the boxes McCrone had brought to the facility and found a small stuffed animal for his daughter.

"To me, this epitomizes what the holidays should be all about, which is giving rather than receiving," explains McCrone, who also serves as State's Attorney for Howard County. "Walking in [to Grassroots' facilities], there was a genuine sense of appreciation and joy [from their clients]."

For the past 10 years, HCBA has used its annual holiday party as a fundraiser for Grassroots. Every attendee is required to bring either a toy or the monetary equivalent to the party, while the canned goods are collected year-round. Each year, the Association's donations have slightly increased, but it is truly the thought and action that make a difference.

"We are just delighted they think of us during this time of year," says Andrea S. Ingram, Executive Director of Grassroots, adding that she was "thrilled" with this year's donations – the largest amount that HCBA has given to date.

The gifts are organized and made available to the clients in a Christmas-shop scene, with the intention of the clients personally picking out gifts for their children and wrapping them, thus becoming a part of the process itself rather than simply being a recipient.

Together, HCBA and Grassroots made sure that holiday joy and cheer were distributed throughout their county, leaving no one in the cold.

"We all feel Grassroots is a worthwhile charity that targets people in Howard County," notes McCrone. "It is a longstanding charity that truly does a great deal for our area."

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Publications : Bar Bulletin: January 2006

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