This holiday season, plenty of Coachella Valley residents could benefit from a little extra help — whether it's extra pet food, canned goods, clothing or even blood. With that in mind, The Desert Sun has compiled a list of local nonprofits and what they're in need of, other than monetary donations.
Helping seniors through the holidays
The Mizell Center, which has programs to support seniors in Palm Springs and the rest of the Coachella Valley, is providing holiday gift bags to 300 homebound seniors this year. The deadline to donate is Friday.
Items requested (no travel size items):
bars of soap
To donate: Items may be dropped off at Mizell Center at 480 S. Sunrise Way in Palm Springs weekdays from 8 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. For more information, email email@example.com.
In Palm Desert, the Joslyn Center is holding its "Supplies to Thrive Drive" through Monday, Dec. 6. It will also be providing goods for its homebound seniors.
In addition to the items requested by the Mizell Center, the Joslyn Center is also asking for:
paper products (napkins, paper towels, coffee filters)
puzzle books, jigsaw puzzles, and books to read
laundry and dish soap
disposable plates, cups, utensils
light bulbs and batteries
stamps, envelopes and greeting cards
dental care supplies
lip balm, hand lotion, and hand sanitizer
cologne or aftershave
hairbrushes and combs
large screen calculators
matches and toothpicks
All items should be unused, full-size, sealed and individually packaged.
To donate: Drop items off at the Joslyn Center reception desk. The center is located at 73750 Catalina Way in Palm Desert and is open 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. Monday through Friday. For more information, contact Melanie at 760-340-3220 ext. 102 or MelanieL@joslyncenter.org.
Cathedral City Senior Center has a year-round Medi Closet that provides loaner medical and mobility supplies to the community. New or gently used items are accepted weekdays between 9 a.m. and 1 p.m. at the senior center, 37171 W. Buddy Rogers Ave. in Cathedral City.
Frequently requested items include adult diapers and pads, Ensure and scooters. For more information, call 760-321-1548.
The senior center is also accepting canned and boxed foods for its food pantry. Items may be dropped off between 9 a.m. and 4 p.m. Monday through Friday.
Peanut butter, canned goods and other food items
All three nonprofits are in need of canned goods, including tuna, chicken, and vegetables; bagged and boxed beans, pastas and rices; cereal, oatmeal, nuts and seeds; and canned fruit.
FIND Food Bank encourages donations of healthy foods — items that are low-sodium, low-sugar, low-fat, non-fat, unsalted, and/or with no added salt and sugar.
To donate: Drop off donations to FIND's administrative office and warehouse at 83775 Citrus Ave. in Indio. Hours are 8:30 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. Ring the doorbell when you arrive.
The Community Food Bank at The Center is also asking for macaroni and cheese, ramen, crackers, protein and granola bars, pasta sauce, and cat and dog food.
To donate: Drop off donations on Tuesdays and Thursdays between 10 a.m. and noon or between 5 p.m. and 7 p.m. Thursday evenings at The Center, 610 S. Belardo Rd. in Palm Springs. For self-service, a collection barrel is available on the street outside of The Center as well.
In addition to the above, the Coachella Valley Rescue Mission accepts cold dairy items and fresh meats. Its needs include:
butter, milk, cream, sour cream
sugar & brown sugar
flour, pancake mix, oatmeal, dry cereal
cooking oil (vegetable, canola, corn, olive)
vinegar (red, white, balsamic)
syrup, jams & jellies, peanut butter, apple sauce jar and apple sauce cups
pasta, macaroni and cheese
condiments (mustard, ketchup, mayo, relish, salsa, coffee creamer)
canned goods (corn, peas, green beans, refried beans, pinto beans, mixed vegetables, chili, soup, enchilada sauce)
spices and herbs (seasoning salt, lemon pepper, garlic, paprika, rosemary, oregano, thyme, parsley, salt, pepper)
beverages (coffee, sports drinks, fruit juice, water)
fresh and canned meats (chicken, beef, pork, and fish)
The Coachella Valley Rescue Mission also accepts household and hygiene supplies as well as clothing and other items.
cleaning supplies (bleach, laundry soap, floor cleaner, plastic gloves)
shampoo, conditioner, body wash, soap bars, face wash
toothpaste, toothbrushes, floss, mouthwash (non-alcoholic)
feminine hygiene products
razors, shaving cream
body lotion and cream
toilet paper, Q-Tips, Kleenex
diapers, baby wipes
baby food and formula
strollers, unused car seats
men and women's clothing and shoes
over the counter medicine and cough drops
To donate: Drop off donations between 8 a.m. and 4 p.m. daily at the Donation Dock at 47470 Van Buren St. in Indio, or after hours at the security office. For large donations, call 760-347-3512 ext. 300 to arrange a pickup.
The Well in the Desert, which focuses much of its efforts on helping those experiencing homelessness, also feeds Coachella Valley residents year-round. Its "wish list," however, is mostly filled with personal hygiene items and clothing. Items uniquely requested by the nonprofit include:
To donate: Call the Well at 760-656-8905.
Toys for children
Ben & Jerry's and the Riverside County Sheriff's Department is holding a toy drive from 5 to 9 p.m. on Friday at The River Amphitheater, 71-800 Highway 111 in Rancho Mirage. Toys will go to underprivileged children 12 and younger.
To donate: Bring new, unwrapped toys or sports equipment valued at $10 or more to the event. In exchange, those who donate will receive a free scoop of ice cream.
Pet food and supplies
The Center, which also accepts pet food, is having its annual pet food drive and winter social on Monday, Dec. 6. The event, dubbed "PAWS n' CLAUS," will be held from 5:30 p.m. to 7 p.m. at Eight4Nine Restaurant & Lounge in Palm Springs, 849 N. Palm Canyon Drive.
Guests may dress up or wear ugly holiday sweaters.
The Coachella Valley Cat Club and Guide Dogs of the Desert accept pet-related donations as well and each has its own "wish list" at Amazon.com. The cat club requests cat litter and cat food. Guide Dogs of the Desert requests dog food, leashes and collars, waste bags, paper towels, kennels and other items.
The Palm Springs Animal Shelter has an Amazon "wish list" too; however, its website also lists household and pet items it typically needs.
The shelter welcomes donations of new or gently used items such as:
small and medium blankets
small desk supplies (paper, pens, tape)
cat litter boxes (new or very clean)
cat litter (new only)
dog and cat bowls
leashes and collars (no harnesses)
puppy pads (new only)
pet food and treats (unopened and unexpired), especially Friskies and Fancy Feast canned cat food
pet toys (no tennis balls)
kennels and carriers
pet beds (no extra large sizes)
pet medications (call before bringing)
Community blood drives
If you can't afford to donate goods, you can still help the community by donating something else: your blood.
LifeStream Blood Bank has several blood drives coming up, including:
Nov. 30: 73510 Fred Waring Drive in Palm Desert from 8 a.m. to 1 p.m.
Dec. 2: Desert Water Agency at 1200 S. Gene Autry Trail in Palm Springs from 9 a.m. to 2 p.m.
Dec. 3: Sky Valley Resort at 74-711 Dillon Rd. in Desert Hot Springs from 8 a.m. to 1 p.m.
Donors receive a LifeStream blanket (while supples last) and free mini-physical, including readings for blood pressure, pulse, cholesterol levels, iron level and temperature. All donors must wear a mask or face covering and submit to a COVID-19 symptom review before being admitted to the donor waiting area.
To make an appointment for these drives or at a LifeStream location, call 800-879-4484 or visit LStream.org.
Maria Sestito covers issues of aging in the Coachella Valley. She is also a Report for America corps member. Follow her on Twitter @RiaSestito, on Instagram @RiaSestito_Reporter or email her at firstname.lastname@example.org.
This article originally appeared on Palm Springs Desert Sun: Palm Springs area nonprofits seek food,, clothing donations Giving Tuesday