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The Salvation Army of Wilson’s Red Kettle campaign is vital to the Salvation Army’s mission each year.
The funds raised will be used to help those in need during critical times for such things as food, rent and electric bills.
“All the money stays here in Wilson,” said Angela Bateman, Salvation Army service center director. “Without their donations, a lot of people would not be able to get the assistance we provide them.”
Bell ringers will be stationed outside many popular establishments this year including Walmart, Walgreens, Belk, Big Lots, Hobby Lobby and Parker’s Barbecue.
Most of the hours run from 10 a.m. to 7 or 8 p.m. depending upon the store. Bateman said Parker’s Barbecue will have bell ringers during the daytime.
Bateman said they’ve have several civic clubs and others to reach out about volunteering to ring bells during the season. The Red Kettle Campaign will run through Dec. 24.
ANGEL TREE PROGRAM
In addition to donations through the Salvation Army’s Red Kettle Campaign, folks can also help by adopting a child through the Christmas program. The list will run daily in The Wilson Times and will continue to run in the newspaper and online until the Angel Tree program is over.
The Salvation Army had more than 300 families this year fill out applications for the program, which includes children and seniors. That number equals to roughly 500 or 600 individuals, officials said.
Bateman said there are various ways to adopt an angel, including contacting the Salvation Army or snagging a tag on the angel Christmas tree at Walmart on Forest Hills Road.
Bateman said all seniors have already been adopted. She said many businesses, corporations, churches and individuals have stepped up to the plate and have adopted many children as well. There are about 100 angels left to adopt.
“This community has rocked in making sure no one is without this holiday season,” Bateman said. She said so many groups have reached out to her on a daily basis on adopting angels, which is truly a blessing.
“We’ve all fell on hard times,” Bateman said. “This program is just amazing and makes sure the people on hard times can still celebrate Christmas and know that someone in this community cares about them.”
Angel tree gifts need to be dropped off at the Salvation Army by Dec. 12. The distribution for those families will be held over a three-day period at the Boys and Girls Club gym from Dec. 17 through Dec. 19.
For more information on how you can help with the Angel Tree program contact Angela Bateman at 252-243-2696 ext. 4. For more information on how you can volunteer to ring bells for the Red Kettle Campaign contact Lt. Christine Towne at 252-904-3262.