St. Clair County Associate Judge Chris Kolker announced that a family tradition of donating money to charities rather than exchanging gifts continued this year.
In a press release issued on Dec. 23, Kolker indicated that Join Hands East St. Louis and Christian Activity Center each received a $500 donation.
“It’s the right thing to do and it is really what Christmas is about, helping others," Kolker said in a statement. "East. St. Louis is my hometown.
"These are amazing charities that directly help those in the most need."
The release further stated that Kolker, his brother, sister and parents have long been participating in donating to various charities.
The family's past donations have gone to Heifer International, St. Jude, the Red Cross and charities that help abused women.