CHRISTMAS might be known as the "happiest time of the year", but for many the opposite can be the case.
With this in mind, the Leeton Salvation Army is again co-ordinating its annual Christmas appeal to help make the festive season a little brighter for many residents.
The appeal is used to specifically help those in the community who need it most.
Times have been tough in recent years, but the drought is exacerbating the problems, according to Leeton Salvation Army Captain Wendy-Sue Swann.
"The drought is affecting so many people, not just farmers, just about anyone really," she said.
"With the drought, that is adding to the load for people. However, there's always going to be people looking for help every year.
"There seems to always be something every year that adds to the need.
"This year it's the drought."
Residents can help the Salvation Army in Leeton to ensure everyone has a happy Christmas by donating food items, presents or toys for children or even a monetary contribution.
The organisation recently held a special event where toys were for sale at a vastly discounted rate.
"That was so people could come, purchase these toys at a low cost, but still feel like they are contributing," Captain Swann said.
"It was done through our food hall. It was for those who perhaps might feel too proud to ask for help.
"That's part of what our appeal is about this year."
Christmas is one of the hardest times of the year for Australians doing it tough, with large numbers living in poverty and struggling to afford basics such as food.
Many will also spend the festive season alone.
"We want people to know they can come in and speak to us about getting help ... that's what we are here for," Captain Swann said.
"We can even be here just for a chat for those that might be feeling isolated this year."
Residents wanting to donate items to the appeal can do so at the Leeton Salvation Army headquarters in Maple Street.
Tuesday and Thursdays are the best time to do so.
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