During the United Fund's Torchlight Campaign, the Times Observer will help contributors take a look at the myriad ways the united Fund assists local agencies who, in turn, serve our entire community.
I was looking for a small momento for our volunteers who came to this year's volunteer recognition dinner. Looking through a magazine from The Salvation Army, I found a small pin that had a red kettle on it and the pin said, "Expect Change." It was a wonderful thought for people who give themselves in work for The Salvation Army. As we come to our new United Fund Campaign, we have 21 organizations that people in Warren County can "Expect Change" when they are in need. The Warren County United Fund can help us help them smile.
At The Salvation Army, we help families smile by changing their physical needs. Last year more than 300 men, women and children were fed each week at The Salvation Army's meals programs. Lunch and a Wednesday supper meal are served at the Army. The Salvation Army provides county residents with monthly food baskets. Approximately 700 eligible households are helped with food donated by the state and federal governments. The Salvation Army's Emergency Food Pantry is open weekdays to provide food to families in crisis. This food provides people with the opportunity to change their physical situation with a good nutritious meal.
At the Salvation Army, we help families smile by changing their housing situation! Transients, fire victims and others in crisis, receive emergency lodging through The Salvation Army. Individuals and families facing eviction are considered for rent or mortgage assistance to prevent relocation and provide stability for each family. Utility bills are paid to keep electric, gas, or water in these homes. What change comes over a family knowing they are able to stay in their home! They are all smiles.
The Salvation Army sees that children from low-income families are "bundled-up" each winter, by providing new winter coats, boots, hats and mittens to more than 200 children and senior citizens each October. We provide new school clothing and book bags to another 75 children each August, so that students can return to school less concerned about how they are dressed and more excited about learning. The Salvation Army also provides gently worn clothing to men, women and children in need throughout the year.
The Salvation Army goes the extra mile to help others experience the joy of the holiday season. Last year, the "Treasures for Children" program provided Christmas gifts, toys and clothing to more than 500 area children. Approximately 1,000 nursing home residents, inmates and mental health patients received visits and Christmas gifts. The Salvation Army also provides a bountiful Christmas food basket for nearly 350 families to enjoy together.
So, through your contributions, the Salvation Army is seeing people change from frowns to smiles. We cannot do it without the help you give through our United Fund. Thank you for helping us help them smile.