Salvation Army seeks gifts for Christmas assistance program | News

It’s beginning to look a lot like Christmas at the Crossroads Mall in Mt. Hope.

This week a large wreath was installed inside the main entrance at the mall for the Salvation Army of Beckley’s Christmas assistance program.

Instead of ornaments, dozens of slim red and white tags are hung on the wreath with the name and age of a child as well as a few items on the child’s Christmas list.

Major Rebecca Mott with the Salvation Army said each tag represents a child in their Christmas assistance program.

This year, for their Christmas assistance program, Mott said they will be helping a total of 550 people, including 332 children, with toys and food for Christmas.

Mott said children from all the counties they serve – Raleigh, Wyoming, Fayette, Greenbrier, Nicholas, Webster and Pocahontas – have tags hung on the wreath, which they call an Angel Tree at the mall.

“This is our opportunity to let children know somebody cares about them,” Mott said. “Every child knows that Santa has remembered them and that’s the most important part of Santa … because sometimes some of our families don’t have the money and it’s very hard to keep the roof over your head, food on the table, utility bills paid, kids clothed and then to turn around at Christmas and try to get everything that your child wants. It can be very difficult, and we just help alleviate that stress a little on the parents.”

Mott said anyone who takes a tag off the wreath is asked to bring the gifts they’ve purchased unwrapped to the Salvation Army’s location at 312 S. Fayette St. by Dec. 9.

After the gifts were brought to the Salvation Army, Mott said they spent a week sorting through the gifts to get them ready for parents to pick up.

“We normally just put (the gifts) in a black trash bag so the parents can put it in the car without the kids seeing what’s inside,” she said.

Mott said anyone in the community who would like to volunteer to help the Salvation Army organize these gifts can call the main office number 304-253-9541 ​​and dial ext. 3 to reach Mott’s direct line.

She added that those who would like to give funds to support their Christmas assistance program can do so by placing money in one of their iconic red kettles, which are stationed outside the main entrance to the mall.

“Whenever you see a red kettle, that money first goes to fund our Christmas program but then everything that’s left over we use throughout the year for our services,” Mott said.

Mott said the red kettles, which are always accompanied by a bell ringer, will be at the mall Tuesday through Saturday through December.

Starting the Saturday before Thanksgiving, Mott said red kettles will also be at the Walmarts in Beckley as well as the Walmart in Lewisburg.

“With gas prices, it’s a little too hard for us to get to our other service areas,” she said.

Mott said they are also looking for people to volunteer as bell ringers. Anyone who would like to do so can call the Salvation Army of Beckley’s main office and dial ext. 5.


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