Residents, businesses and organizations of the Central Okanagan showed their generosity and showed confidence in the work the local Salvation Army does.
This years Christmas Kettle fundraising goal was $700,000 and the community rose to the challenge and raised $745,000. This wasn’t a record breaker but the numbers of who received help this Christmas was.
The Food and Toy program helped a record 2,126 Individuals with food support and 1,049 children in toys just at Christmas.
“We are preparing to help more this year as there will be greater need for help and much higher numbers come Christmas,” said Darryl Burry, executive director the Salvation Army Central Okanagan. “This year is setting itself up for hardship for families from the economy, job losses and rising prices for basic needs.”
The Kettle Campaign is the primary fundraiser for the Salvation Army Central Okanagan, it is a vital component to funding the programs to the community throughout the year.
“ We haven’t raised our goal in several years and with the rising costs and rising needs we work hard to stretch every cent given. When the community gives past our goal it makes us able to do more. We are grateful for the generosity of the community in the Central Okanagan and how they give in time, resources and funds,” said Burry.
It took over 1,500 individuals, including families, business and service organization teams to cheerfully host both indoor and outdoor kettles at 19 locations in Kelowna and West Kelowna. Together with the behind the scenes teams of drivers and counters, brings the total volunteer hours to over 4,500 to make the kettle campaign a success.
“We are one of the very few Salvation Army Kettle Campaigns that runs with all volunteers. Our community is generous with their time and we cant do what we do without our volunteers,” said Suzie Docherty, volunteer coordinator.
Docherty was particularly pleased with the number of parents who booked to ring with their children. We have generational bell ringers and its heartening to see the next generation giving back.
The Salvation Army is planning for a difficult 2016 for families and individuals. Putting in measures to ensure there is enough to assist all who will need support. They are accept donations all year of nonperishable food items, frozen goods especially proteins, rubber totes to help with food storage and fresh items in larger quantities. To find out what you can donate please call Sonia at the Community Life Centre at 250.765.3450
For those who wanting to support The Salvation Army Central Okanagan in 2016 you can at anytime by going to www.kelownasalvationarmy.ca and donate online, or feel free to drop into the office at 1480 Sutherland Avenue Kelowna. To get involved by volunteering. Call: 250.860.2329 ext. 333