Missoula Story of the Week: Local Charities Benefit at the Holidays


The holiday season is a time for Missoulians to show their generous side.

Families in need throughout the community can look forward to a little extra help filling their pantries, because of the many charity drives held during the Christmas season.

Our city is blessed with a large population of citizens that donate their time, money, and goods to help a number of families that find themselves struggling to make ends meet during Christmas time.

First Security Bank and KPAX news channel are both taking donations of canned food for their Holiday Food Drive. According to KPAX.com, non-perishable food items can be dropped off at any participating First Security Bank branch. Donations will be gathered up and taken to families in need of a little extra help with groceries this winter.

Watson’s Children Center in Missoula found itself the recipient of a substantial monetary donation from a well-known national chain.

As part of Walmart’s ninth annual “12 Days of Giving” campaign the store awarded the Missoula area children’s center with $12,500. Missoula’s Watson’s Children Center was one of 140 organizations that will receive part of $1.5 million dollars in charitable donations over a twelve day period, according to KPAX.com.

According to the website for Watson’s Children Center the charity, “is dedicated to providing a safe, nurturing environment for children who have experienced abuse, neglect, abandonment or family crisis.”

The center provides a much-needed service to our city’s most precious and fragile members. The foundation was started by former Jack and Jill Nursery and Daycare provider and retired Target Range School teacher, Janice Joseph Watson in 1977.

The Missoula Food Bank

The Missoula Food Bank takes in food donations in order to combat hunger in Missoula year round, ramping up efforts during the Christmas season. School children are at particular risk to hunger related problems during the holiday season.

School children are on vacation and often miss meals they would normally eat in school. The Missoula Food Bank provides meals for children through their Kids’ Table program, combating hunger in school children.

Charitable organizations count on donations made during the holiday season in order the keep their doors open during the rest of the year.

So, Missoulians, dig deep and help your favorite foundation out this season. We never know when we might find ourselves in need of help and having so many wonderful charities in Missoula is one of the reasons we are so fortunate to live in this community.


Each week, Tom Diddel recaps the week’s most talked-about story in Missoula. Visit the Make it Missoula News & Opinion section for more talk of the town.


Tom Diddel has lived in Missoula on and off for nearly thirty-eight years. He enjoys skiing, hiking, and many other outdoor activities. He holds a B.A. in English Literature from the University of Montana and is currently working as a Freelance Writer and a Para-Educator.