CLINTON — Members of the Clinton Fire Department are hoping area residents will help them help others.

Several Clinton firefighters are volunteering their off-duty time to stand at two intersections to collect donations for the Muscular Dystrophy Association during the annual Fill the Boot campaign.

During the 2005 Fill the Boot donation drive, the Gateway area community helped Clinton firefighters collect $6,800.

In 2006, the Clinton Fire Department received approximately $7,500 in donations for MDA, falling short of their goal of $8,500.

Firefighter Karen Zimmer, chairwoman of this year’s Clinton MDA Fill the Boot campaign, said firefighters hope area residents will help Clinton firefighters exceed last year’s total.

“They’ve been really supportive in the past and we hope they’ll stop and help us with a worthy cause,” said Zimmer.

Three donation days are planned and each day will be staffed by one of the three firefighter shift divisions.

Zimmer encourages any motorists who want to donate to the MDA to give whatever they can and remarked that every little bit helps.

Much of the funds raised in Clinton will go to assist local families.

“One hundred percent of the funds go to the MDA and a large percentage of it stays in this area,” she said.

Some of the money helps fund summer trips to Camp Courageous in Monticello for area children affected by neuromuscular diseases. Camp Courageous is a non-profit, year-round respite care and recreational facility for individuals of all ages with disabilities.

This year’s Fill the Boot goal is $8,000. Clinton firefighters will be accepting donations at the intersections of 13th Avenue North and Third and Fourth streets. Firefighters held boots to collect the donations from 8 a.m. to noon today and will again from 8 a.m. to noon. Aug. 10 and 24.

Anyone who would like to donate but misses the firefighters at those times can drop donations off at Central Fire Station.

A large donation boot can be found just outside the station’s west entrance from 7 a.m. to 4 p.m. daily through Aug. 30.

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