"Here is my contribution, earlier than in past years and with a bump for inflation, to try and keep up the momentum," began a letter from an "anonymous" District Liner.

"Why don't you remind your readers that if they specify 'no acknowledgement," the hospital gets a bit more?"

District Liners near and far, unless you want acknowledgement from the hospital, why not let you canceled check serve as proof of your gift for tax purposes.

I've sort of let myself view the hospital's acknowledgment of individual gifts as my own "thank-you" because it would be impossible for me to do it personally. But let me take this opportunity to express once again my profound and heartfelt thanks to all. I open and read each letter, so every one comes to my attention.

Our friendly reader sent a check for $45 which helped raise the total contributed by 72 supporters of Children's Hospital to $1,782.08. The big boost today came from a good showing from organizations and informal groups.

We don't need our usual build-up to three-digit territory today. The congregation of Zion Baptist Church took us right there with their gifts of $100. Employees of the FDA's Office of the Associate Commissioner for Regulatory Affairs sent $172, almost tripling last year's effort. A check for $184 arrived from the folks at the State Department Federal Credit Union.

Two branches of the Air Force Systems Command, the Directorates of Transportation and of Maintenance at Andrews AFB, combined forces to contribute $210. (And I'm happy to note that my father was a participant.) Members of the National Association of Broadcasters raised $230. (And I'm happy to note that my mother was cheif collector there.) Thanks for the support.

Members of the Kiwanis Club of Falls Church gathered $250. Employees of the Government Systems Division at Western Union Telegraph sent $255, their 13th annual contribution. "Consistency does pay off!" they wrote.

Employees and members of the Transportation Federal Credit Union chipped in $275. Their gift was sent in memory of a co-worker's daughter who died at Children's Hospital some time ago.

The entire proceeds of the coffee fund at the Property Assessment Division of the D.C. government's Department of Finance and Revenue, $285.02, were sent to me for forwarding to Children's Hospital.

For the fourth year, the 60-voice MAD (music and drama) Christmas Chorus at the Goodard Space Flight Center held a Christmas program to benefit Children's Hospital. This year the group raked in $401 to help provide free care to needy children.

Collected "in lieu of" Christmas card exchange by 52 employees in FCC's Data Automation Division was $426.30. That's a lot of cards. Many thanks and a tip of the hat to you fine folks.

Proceeds from their 4th annual bazaar, a facility-wide Christmas card, and a silent auction were the methods used by friends at NASA's Scientific and Technical Information Facility to raise $500. Any method you use is fine with me. These results are fantastic!

Officers of the Metropolitan Police Department's Traffic Enforcement Branch sent $507 for the children "in appreciation of the many Bill Gold articles supporting and aiding traffic safety." Bill was really touched when I showed him the letter from the officers, and commented that traffic safety is everyone's business. He sends his thanks.

"Each year at the Carey Winston annual party, a raffle is held for the benefit of Children's Hospital. It is with pride that we forward herewith Carey Winston employee checks totaling $630." I hope all the employees who participated felt pride similar to that of their office scribe.

Top honors for today were almost a tie. A nice, fat envelope containing $1,214 in checks arrived from the staffers of the House Committee on Appropriations. They once again elected "not to exchange Christmas cards and we are more than pleased at the results." Also electing to "save a tree" and not exchange cards among themselves were the employees of the Charles E. Smith Companies. Their group effort yielded $1,230 for the free care fund at Children's. Very good work from both groups.

These 16 groups combined to add $6,869.32 to today's total. Together with the $1,782.08 donated by individuals, our overall figure comes to $8,651.40. Not bad at all for one day's mail.

Inasmuch as the shoebox held $114,417.41 yesterday, with the addition of today's total, we're sitting at $123,068.81 right now. But, that's only about half of what we'd like to have in the till come Jan. 31.

Let's keep the ball rolling. Send your checks, made payable to Children's Hospital, to: Scott Chase, c/o The Washington Post, 1150 15th St. NW, Washington, D.C. 20071. I'll be waiting.