DOTHAN, Ala. (WTVY) – We know it’s been a hard year for families this year with the Covid-19 pandemic causing financial difficulties. Many had wondered if they’d even have a Christmas.
The Salvation Army’s Angel Tree program is providing some relief for those in need. The non-profit is getting ready to distribute hundreds of toys, food, and clothing to families, as part of that program.
“This is really a group effort,” said Captain Deanna Jones of the Salvation Army. “We come in and sort the things that the community brings in. But really without the community helping, this would not be possible.”
400 families signed up this year- a result of the hardships faced in 2020 due to the pandemic.
“Especially this year, we’ve just seen an increase due to Covid-19,” Jones said. “People that are never asking for help before have come into our facility.”
The Salvation Army needed help with organization due to hundreds of donations from the community. That’s where the Rehobeth High School NJROTC program came in Tuesday.
“A group of us are over here sorting toys for kids to go to families for Christmas, and everything, which is really nice,” ROTC member Sydney Milum said.
The cadets are also getting something in return.
“It’s a team-building experience,” ROTC member Axl Reid said. “We have to learn how to work as a team. We’re helping the community as well.”
“A lot of families at this point in time can’t really give for their kids the way they want to,” Milum said. “And we get to give them toys that they can open up and be happy on Christmas.”
Captain Jones said while the program helps these families in need, this year, the meaning goes much deeper.
“It’s just so much more than that,” Jones said. “You know, every kid is just anticipating Christmas. When they go back to school after the Christmas break, they can say ‘Hey I got this L-O-L doll or i got a pogo stick.”
The Salvation Army will distribute the donations to those families next Monday, December 21st from 9 A.M. to noon.
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