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Salvation Army kicks off Christmas Kettle Campaign

By Celina Ip

The Pembroke Salvation Army kicked off their 2017 Christmas Kettle Campaign at the Pembroke East End Mall on Saturday. Pictured in back (from left) are Salvation Army youth director Amanda Wilson, Laurentian Valley Coun. George Hodgkinson, MP Cheryl Gallant, Youth Centre member Kassandra Jurgens and Mayor Mike LeMay. In front (from left) are Youth Centre members Jasmine Rothwell, Anastasia Black and Salvation Army officer Lieut. Kath Walker.

The Pembroke Salvation Army kicked off their 2017 Christmas Kettle Campaign at the Pembroke East End Mall on Saturday. Pictured in back (from left) are Salvation Army youth director Amanda Wilson, Laurentian Valley Coun. George Hodgkinson, MP Cheryl Gallant, Youth Centre member Kassandra Jurgens and Mayor Mike LeMay. In front (from left) are Youth Centre members Jasmine Rothwell, Anastasia Black and Salvation Army officer Lieut. Kath Walker.

PEMBROKE - 

The Salvation Army kettles are out, marking the unofficial start of the Christmas season.

 

On Nov. 25 at the Pembroke Mall, Salvation Army representatives met with local dignitaries to officially launch the Salvation Army’s Christmas Kettle Campaign and their Angel Tree.

As the Salvation Army’s largest fundraiser, the Christmas Kettle Campaign raises around 50 percent of the organization’s funds. Those funds help to maintain and support the annual Christmas toy and hamper program, community lunch, the food bank and the youth centre.

Pembroke Mayor Mike LeMay expressed that the Salvation Army can always rely on the generosity of the local community to help fulfill their mission to ensure that everyone is able to enjoy a Christmas that is merry and bright.

“We want everyone to have a merry Christmas and we know that there are various people in our community that have a difficult time, so thank you Salvation army and your many volunteers who will be over the net few weeks watching over the kettles,” said LeMay. “We have a very carintg communiy and we’re very fortunate to have the Salvation Army kickoff the season of Christmas.”

On behalf of Mayor Steve Bennett of Laurentian Valley, Coun. George Hodgkinson expressed similar sentiments about the great work that the Salvation Army does each year to ensure that everyone has an enjoyable Christmas season.

“I’d like to thank Kath and the Salvation Army for the support that you give to our communities as it’s not just at Christmastime that the Salvation Army supports our community but year round. I heard the number you're doing this year and it's much more which tells me that the need for our help is more important. So I encourage everyone to dig deep inn their pockets this year and help the Salvation Army to help our residents,” said Hodgkinson.

Due to an increased demand for the Salvation Army’s programs and services, their hope is to raise a total of $140,000 this Christmas Season, through the generous support received through the Christmas Kettles.

“Unfortunately we’ve experienced an increased demand for our programs and services, and we are once again seeking the communities support. This year has seen an increase demand of over 50 per cent for our Christmas hamper program,” said Salvation Army officer Lieut. Kath Walker. “This year we are hoping to raise a total of $140,000 this Christmas Season so we can continue to give hope and support to those in need in our community.”

The Salvation Army is also collecting new and unwrapped toys that can be dropped off their Angel Tree at the Pembroke East End Mall. The toys will be given to give to local children this Christmas, with a particularity need for gifts to give to children aged eight to 12 years old.

“Along with putting together over 300 Christmas hampers, we’re preparing toys to give to over 280 children this Christmas season and we’re in particular need for gifts to give to children between eight to 12 years old,” said Lieut. Walker. “With you're support we’ll be able to brighten Christmas morning for hundreds of children in our community.”

For those interested in volunteering with one of the seven Christmas Kettles, the Salvation Army is still seeking volunteering to provide two hours of their time in order to make a lasting difference in the community. If interested, contact the Pembroke Salvation Army at 613-735-5601 ext. 3 or email at sa.pembroke.volunteer@gmail.com

cip@postmedia.com