Released 10 October 2012
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Article written by:
Todd Cline of Gwinnet Daily Post
Tis the season?
Though the weather cooled off this weekend, it's hard to start
thinking about Christmas when Halloween is still three weeks away. But Andy
Miller says he has no choice if he wants the Salvation Army's Gwinnett County
Corps to eclipse last year's kettle campaign.
Captain Miller, who moved to Gwinnett in July, wants to eclipse
the $255,000 raised in Gwinnett last year and he knows the only way to do that
is to add more volunteers to ring the iconic bells. And the only way to do that
is to start recruiting bell ringers far in advance of trick-or-treating.
Everything that is raised here stays in the county," Miller
said. "I'm brand-new to the county, but I think we can raise more (than
last year) if we can get the volunteers. One of the key things we can do is get
people organized early. If we get organized early, we can have expotentially
more workers and raise more money."
The Salvation Army is looking for any and all volunteers, but
Miller said high school clubs and sports teams work well, as do civic groups
and nonprofits. Miller said the Salvation Army is also actively pursuing
churches and Sunday school classes and other groups that are looking for a
project to help in the community.
"It's a good way to do something as a team," he said.
Miller is a sixth-generation member of the Salvation Army. His
also named Andy Miller, was the national commander. Miller and his wife, Abby,
also a member of the Salvation Army, moved here from Arlington, Texas, where
for the past five years, his duties included working with the Dallas Cowboys
for the large kettle kickoff during the team's annual Thanksgiving day game.
There are new adventures waiting in Gwinnett, and the Millers -- who
preachers and administrators for the Army -- and their three children are
quickly becoming part of the community.
"We love it here," Miller said. "I like the way
people work together to solve problems. But as the county grows, we have more
and more needs and we need to raise more money."
Miller has the perfect counterpart in Margaret Stewart. The Norcross
is chairman of the Gwinnett County Advisory Board and enjoys Miller's passion,
matching it with her own.
"My eye is always on action. I want this kettle (campaign)
to be great," Stewart said. "It's just great to ring the bells, and
every time you do it you end up getting a story. Someone will come up and tell
you: 'I was having a rough time and the Salvation Army saved my life.'"
If you want to get in to the ring of things and get a head start on
Christmas giving, go to www.salvationarmy.org and click on the Gwinnett tab or
call 770-724-1663 for more information.