Released 12 January 2010
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Salvation Army Captains thanks community.
As I celebrate the New Year with all is possibilities, I look back over the last year and I feel very blessed. It is inspiring to see how residents of our community came together to meet the needs of neighbors even while facing cutbacks and lean times themselves. Truly these gifts were given in the Spirit of Christmas.
We were blessed to be able to accept every applicant that came to Angel Tree program this year. Angels were adopted from the trees at Wal-Mart, Kmart, Alleghany Regional Hospital, Dabney Lancaster Community College, and Jackson River Technical College.
We realize this is a tough season, and every dollar that people give is a dollar they don't have for their own needs. We saw a great deal of "getting back to the essentials" with the Angel Tree this year. Extravagant gifts were few and far between having been replaced with much needed staples like school clothing and shoes. However, there were several bikes, and favorites in the categories of FurReal pets, Hannah Montana, and transformers! My favorite was a wish for a new bed that was fulfilled complete with new sheets sets and blankets.
We kept the volunteers busy distributing over 3,100 brand new toys to children and over 1,600 articles of clothing. We knew it would be a tough year for the program and it was confirmed when 45% of the Angels went unadopted this year. Thankfully, thanks to donations in the Red Kettles were able to supply new toys in abundance for every angel so none would go without. Families received just under 200 grocery boxes this year complete with a Turkey Christmas meal. All in all, we served 605 Angels at two locations.
In addition to toys and clothing we were able to help families who were in danger of losing vital utilities because they have had to juggle paying their bills with buying food. Not only do we help with groceries but we offer assistance with their utilities if they are in danger of being without heat, electricity or water. For 79 families The Salvation Army prevented cutoffs by helping them to catch up. Eleven families were kept their homes thanks to Salvation Army crisis assistance.
Our thanks goes out to the bell ringers who make all this possible! The main fundraiser during the season is the Red Kettles. The Red Kettles Campaign raised an impressive $48,193.68 reaching 96 percent of its $50,000.00 goal for 2009.
Abygail and Nick Leandro, Advisory Board, AHS FCCLA, AHS NHS, Amanda & Nick, Amber Rumble Timber Wolfe, Anthony Weinger, Ashwood United Methodist Church, Black Heritage Club, Boiling Springs Ruritan, Brenda Robertson, Busy Workers, Callahan Ruritan, Christian Motorcycle Association, Christ United Methodist, Clifton Forge Women's Group, Clint Collins, CMA, Concerned Christian Church, Covington Cheerleaders, Covington Dialysis, Covington Fire & Rescue, Covington Jr. Womens Club, Covington Ruritan, Covington Woman's Club, Edgemont Men's ARP Bible Class, Falling Springs Church, Granberry Witness Community, Gospel Tabernacle, Hoke Chapel, Health Occupation Students of America Juniors & Seniors, Jan Armentrout, John Bartell, Key Club, Kiwanis, Life Skills Center, LifeLine Ministries, Margaret Marion, MeadWestvaco, Ministerial Associaton, Mount Pleasant Youth, Myrna, Ardie, Buddy, & Kimm, Pine Street Baptist Church, Pinnell Chapel, Queen of Hearts, Sarah Kettley, South Covington, United Methodist, Temple Baptist Church, Tuesday Morning Prayer Group, VFW Ladies Auxiliary, VA Tech Alumni, Westvaco Rescue Squad, Mount Carmel UMC, Robertson Family, CHS Character Counts, John Murray, Gwen Withrow, Tori Ferina, Travis Allard, Callaghan Ruriteens, Sacred Heart, Strater Kids, Brian & Robin May, Vicky Redman, Amanda McDaniels, Priscilla Monaes, Hot Springs Presbyterian Church, Deldoie Perry, Jason, Kevin & Nora, Mirelle William, John Wolfe, Brandi Richardson, Sorell Family, Linda Ellis, Rhinestone Rockers, Bill Wright, Jeanne Porterfield, Cindy, Danny Byrd, Lynn Creech, Amber Wheeler, Alfred Fridely, Roy Hall, Laura and Cynthia, Living Word, Briana Johnson, Nick Tucker, & Trinity Baptist Church.
A special thank you to Wal-Mart and Kmart for supporting the Angel Tree program, to Applebees, Cucci's Hardees, Michael's Pizza, Quizno's, Wendy's for providing food for the volunteers, to Mr. Rooklin for donating the perfect building for the Toy Shop, area churches for partnering with us, to my wonderful staff, to all the volunteers and donors who made it possible to help the individuals with food, clothing, gifts or most importantly a touch of Joy during this Christmas season.
Thanks to the generosity of those communities we were able to serve 513 family cases for Christmas Assistance, touching the lives of 1,483 individuals.
Serving "the least of these" continues to be an incredible blessing to all of us at The Salvation Army. Thank you and God bless you!
Captains Karl & Janice Dahlin