Halton Hills and North Halton newspapers
Salvation Army kettle campaign under way
Independent & Free Press (Georgetown, ON), 13 Dec 2006, p. 8

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The annual Salvation Army Kettle campaigns are in full swing in both Acton and Georgetown. In Georgetown this year the goal is $46,000, and Acton Salvation Army is hoping to raise $30,000 to help the needy in that community. Georgetown Salvation Army Captain Michael Simpson said the kettles have been out in Georgetown since Nov. 24 and the donations have been steadily coming in. He said approximately $10,000 had been collected already. The kettles are set up in two locations in Georgetown Market Place-- one at the entrance near the HomeSense Winners store and the other at the main entrance near the Santa booth. A third kettle is located in front of the Georgetown LCBO. Volunteers will be staffing the kettles Tuesdays and Wednesdays from 5 to 9 p.m., Thursdays and Fridays 1 p.m. to 9 p.m. and Saturdays 10 a.m. to 9 p.m. Additional volunteers for the kettles are needed in Georgetown. Anyone interested can call 905-877-1374. Simpson said last year more than $43,357 was raised through the kettle campaign, which represents about half of the money needed to run the Georgetown Salvation Army family services program each year. "The response from the public has been excellent," he said. The Acton Salvation Army's kettle campaign also got under way Nov. 24. "We're hoping to make our goal," said Reg Marsh, kettle campaign co-ordinator. Last year's campaign raised $24,000. Kettles in Acton are located at Sobey's, LCBO and Giant Tiger. Marsh said people are needed to staff the kettles. Anyone interested should call him at 519-853-0113 or 519-8531140. Along with the kettle campaigns in both Acton and Georgetown, money is also raised through a letter appeal and donations that come into the Salvation Army from individuals, schools and businesses at Christmas-time. Simpson said they are hoping to raise $24,000 from the letter appeal in Georgetown and approximately $38,000 in donations, bringing in $108,000 in total to meet the family services budget for 2007. Simpson said that money is used throughout the year for those who need transportation, emergency shelter, food, and temporary storage. An example of funds used for transportation last year, Simpson said, was when an area woman who was raised in Halifax, didn't have enough money to purchase a bus ticket so she could get back to Nova Scotia for her grandmother's funeral. Her grandmother had raised her, Simpson said. Through co-ordination with the Salvation Army in Halifax, a ticket was purchased for the woman and she was able to attend the funeral. He said food and food vouchers are provided to needy individuals and families throughout the year, also usually on an emergency basis. Also on an emergency basis Simpson said they provide rooms for those in need of shelter at the McGibbon Hotel and Cedar Springs Motel. Those people are also provided with vouchers for meals. Money raised is also used by the Salvation Army in Georgetown to run programs such as Baby Song, Parents and Tots and the Tuesday morning Drop-In at the church. Simpson said the need for the services provided by the church has remained relatively stable over the past three years, but he has noticed a slight, steady increase. Another important aspect of the Salvation Army's Christmas campaign is the Toy Drive. Simpson said the toys that are collected are distributed to approximately 120 needy families in the area. The toy drive donation box in Georgetown is located in the centre of the mall near Shopper's Drug Mart and various other businesses, including The Independent & Free Press, are also collecting toys. "Usually the teens are left out, there's usually not enough for them," said Simpson. He said ideal items for that age group include gift cards from any store in Georgetown Market Place, make-up, bicycles, and sports equipment. Simpson said they ask that all toy donations come in by Dec. 18 in time to be displayed in a store-like fashion so parents can come in and "shop" for their children on Dec. 20. Those families also receive a voucher for Christmas dinner items to be purchased at Food Basics. In Acton toy donations can be dropped off at the Salvation Army Church, 114 Mill St. E. 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. weekdays, preferably by the end of the week.

Tallyn, Lisa
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13 Dec 2006
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Salvation Army kettle campaign under way