Norm Miller is asking residents not only to shop locally but to give locally as well.

In his address in the Ontario legislature on Tuesday, the Parry Sound Muskoka MPP highlighted the efforts of local groups working together to ensure everyone is able to enjoy the holidays. Miller says the Salvation Army is one organization working hard to provide support for families in need.

Miller says he’s proud to hear that Muskokans were giving back during Moose FM Salvation Army radiothons in both Bracebridge and Huntsville. The two fundraisers pulled in nearly $150,000 for Salvation Army initiatives like the Christmas Hamper program, which gives hampers filled with food and gifts to families over the holidays.

Miller is also congratulating organizers with the Muskoka Shoebox Project who collected over 1,000 boxes filled with gifts and necessities for women in need or who have been victims of a crisis. These shoeboxes were given out to various shelters and organizations like the Salvation Army and YWCA.

Miller says Christmas isn’t the only time people should think about giving. He says the winter is a tough time for many families in Muskoka and local food banks will continue to need support in the New Year.

You can find out how to give back or access some of the Salvation Army services here.

With files from Tom Mangos.