The Salvation Army is gearing up for its busiest season, Christmas time, with many programs and fundraisers going on where residents can get involved or attend.
The first important deadline for the Salvation Army is taking in applications for Christmas hampers, with all this week set aside; the Salvation Army church office is open for taking applications every day from today until Friday, Nov. 23, from 9:30 a.m. to 3:30 p.m.
Any resident or family who would like to receive a Christmas hamper is welcome to apply, said Capt. Melissa Mailman.
She said people need to bring a proof of address, their health care card, and financial information.
Some people may not feel especially needy but might appreciate getting a hamper, but don’t want to come in during public open hours; they can call Melissa at the church office for a private meeting and she will arrange a time to meet.
“We want to see people getting help,” said Capt. Mailman.
One of the most popular programs of the Salvation Army is Adopt-A-Family, which is available on a first-come first-served basis.
Under this program, “if people want to sponsor a family, we’ll match them up with a family to provide the whole Christmas morning package, including toys and food.”
An information package will be sent out, or those interested can e-mail to the Salvation Army at the following: weyb...@can.salvationarmy.org, and the information will be sent out in response.
Those interested will be paired up with a family as soon as possile, and as happens often, there are more people lined up to sponsor a family than there are families to sponsor, said Capt.
Mailman, noting she had inquiries in October already asking for information.
The kettle campaign, one of the most visible fundraising campaigns at Christmas time and the biggest fundraiser of the year for the Salvation Army, will start on Nov. 23.
Part of the campaign is “Adopt-A-Kettle”, where individuals, or a business or a group or church can adopt a kettle at one of the five locations and be responsible for filling one day’s worth of volunteers to sit at the kettle.
The locations are as follows: the Liquor Board store, Wal-Mart, Co-op food store, Wholesale Club and Canadian Tire.
As Capt. Mailman explains, one of the aspects of the kettle campaign is that it’s not just for Christmas time.
“The kettle funds help sustain our programs throughout the year; it’s not just for Christmas,” she said.
The kettles are only out from Thursday to Saturday each week from noon to 8 p.m.; to volunteer for a two-hour shift, or to adopt-a-kettle, contact Helen Orsted, or call the church office who can pass along her cell phone number.
“It’s a really fun time to spread Christmas cheer, and they don’t have to worry about picking up the kettle or anything; that’s all taken care of,” said Capt. Mailman.
Two important dates coming up in December are the CP Holiday Train, which will roll in to Weyburn on Monday, Dec. 17, and the Community Christmas dinner, on Friday, Dec. 21, at Captain’s Hall.
The Holiday Train, lit up with thousands of Christmas lights and featuring an entertainment stage with live music, will roll in on the CP rail line adjacent to Railway Avenue and around Fifth Street at around 7:45 p.m. Those attending the train are encouraged to bring a food or cash donation for the Salvation Army, plus a cash donation is made for the food bank on the entertainment stage.
The Christmas dinner is open for anyone who wants to attend, with the supper to begin at 6 p.m. There is no charge, and no reservation calls are necessary, said Capt. Mailman. There will be a visit by Santa to hand out goodies, and there will be some entertainment as well.
Capt. Mailman added that residents should watch for a fundraiser kickoff event to take place soon, in which people can raise pledges in support of the Salvation Army.