The following is an open letter to Virginia Tech employees from Alan Grant, honorary chair of the 2012 Commonwealth of Virginia Campaign.

Dear Colleagues,

As many of us prepare to spend the holidays with our families, and enjoy food and presents galore, I ask you to think about our neighbors who are not as fortunate and to do what you can to help them.

Think about those parents struggling to provide food, much less a holiday feast, for their children. Think about the local shelters that will be called upon to provide a place for thousands of families to sleep, and the countless other organizations who will provide perhaps the only gift some children will get this holiday season. Our neighbors, and the organizations who support them in their times of need, need our help. You can help make a difference in the lives of our neighbors by making a donation to the campaign.

If you have not already donated to the Commonwealth of Virginia Campaign, please take a moment to give right now.

To date, we have raised $253,430. It’s a great start and we are extremely grateful to everyone who has contributed so far. But, we still have a long way to go to meet our $300,000 goal by Dec. 14. 

Luckily, contributing is as easy as it is vital. And while it’s simple to give, the power of your donation is immense. About 1,300 charities around the state benefit from our efforts. If every Virginia Tech employee donated just $2 per pay period, we would exceed our goal.

The simplest way to give is through an online payroll deduction. You decide how much you want to give and a calculator determines how much to deduct each pay period. Or, you can elect to make your entire contribution at once. 

You then select which of the many worthy charities you wish to direct your donation to. A “learn more” icon directs you to more information if you want to find out about a group. You can divide up your donation to many charities or direct it toward one.

It’s that easy. Please, do it now. Donations can only be made through payroll deduction until Dec. 14.

There are other options, too, including cash, check, or credit card payments and even stock gifts. To donate in any of these ways, please fill out a pledge form and return it to the Department of Human Resources (0318) before Dec. 21, when the winter break begins.

Please, join me in taking these easy steps to make a real difference in someone’s life by making your donation right now.

Thank you for your support.

Happy Holidays.

Alan Grant,

Honorary Chair, 2012 Commonwealth of Virginia Campaign

Dean, College of Agriculture and Life Sciences

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