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Angel Tree program kicking off

The Salvation Army Service Center in Troy is always looking for ways to be of service to the people of Pike County.

One of those ways is the center’s Angel Tree Program, which provides Christmas gifts for children who would otherwise have a meager Christmas.

The Salvation Army Service Center will take applications for its 2009 Angel Tree program from 9 a.m. until noon, Sept. 22-24, at the Service Center, 509 South Brundidge Street, in Troy.

Kim May, Center director, said the Angel Tree Program is for children 12 years of age and under.

“We would like to be able to provide gifts for all applicants but that just isn’t possible,” May said. “We can only serve the first 75 applicants that qualify.”

When filing an application, the parent or guardian must provide a current driver’s license or a picture ID and the social security card of the child or children listed on the application.

“With the application, we must have proof of the family’s total income,” May said. “Those who have questions about the application process are encouraged to call 808-1069.”

May said it is through the generosity of local businesses, churches and individuals and the Pike County Chapter of United Way that the Salvation Army Service Center is able to offer this program and provide assistance to those in need.

“The quarterly donation that we receive from the United Way makes a big difference,” she said.

“The United Way is our biggest single contributor but, without the generosity of everyone, we wouldn’t be able to do all the things we do. We are very appreciative of every donation – monetary and items for the Thrift Shop.”

The Salvation Army always needs items for the Thrift Shop and the pantry, which right now is low, especially in canned meats.

“We get a lot of vegetables but, when we fix baskets for families in need, we want to be able to include some form of protein,” May said.

“Canned meats do cost more but there is a real need for them. Beef stews, spaghetti with meatballs and peanut butter are high in protein but lower in cost than most canned meats.”

The Salvation Army Service Center provides assistance for many needs including utilities and rent.

“Right now, all of the funds that we have budgeted for utilities and rent are gone,” May said.

“In addition to requests for food, utilities and rent, we have many requests for assistance with medicine. We also have emergency situations such a house fires, sickness and loss of income.

“People sometimes need bus tickets or a night in a motel. We have so many requests and we check them out to make sure they are real needs.”

Volunteers are always needed and especially with the upcoming Red Kettle Campaign.

“We do need bell ringers and any organizations or individuals who would like to volunteer are encouraged to contact the Service Center.”