'Tis indeed the season to be jolly. And also to be frantic about decorating, baking, shopping, wrapping, mailing, making lists and checking them over and over.

So 'tis also the privilege of The Post and Courier to give readers a reason to consider the joy of giving to those who need it most.

Throughout December, the annual "Good Cheer Fund," which was begun in 1927, reports on the sometimes heart-breaking circumstances that six local charitable organizations work hard to address during the holidays.

It isn't just children who won't get any presents, although it could be that. It could also be children who don't have enough to eat, parents who can't pay the rent and adults who need reading glasses so they can look for jobs.

This is a tough season to be in want when every commercial, every store and every gathering of friends seems to shout out abundance.

But between the lines of The Post and Courier's daily Good Cheer Fund stories, there is a story of joy, relief and gratitude that donations to the fund help provide through Carolina Youth Development Center, Lowcountry Food Bank, Salvation Army, Star Gospel Mission, Association for the Blind and Coastal Catholic Charities.

There is the hungry family that receives food to sustain them, others who receive gift food cards, health care, rent money, transportation and clothing.

Over the years, readers have donated more than $6.8 million, with every penny going directly to local nonprofit agencies. There are no overhead or administrative costs. Handling those is The Post and Courier's gift.

And this year the Post and Courier Foundation has agreed to match gifts by employees of the company in the area - up to $200 each, with the total not to exceed $25,000.

Donors' names are published in the paper daily or gifts can be made anonymously. People give as memorials and in lieu of cards. They give to spread some joy, and inevitably they are rewarded with a sense of their own joy.

Any number of businesses, organizations and individuals ask for contributions this time of year, and many are worthy.

The Good Cheer Fund will continue, as it has for 86 years, to provide readers a trusted way to give joy to others.