Harrisonburg Salvation Army distributes gifts for Angel Tree Program

Angel Tree Program at Salvation Army Harrisonburg
Angel Tree Program at Salvation Army Harrisonburg(WHSV)
Published: Dec. 17, 2021 at 10:28 AM EST
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HARRISONBURG, Va. (WHSV) - The Salvation Army in Harrisonburg distributed more than a thousand bags for their annual Angel Tree Program.

“The people out there cannot repay you. The Salvation Army cannot repay you. The only thing you can do is say thank you,” Captain Eunice Gitau with the Salvation Army told volunteers as the began the distribution.

There were bags packed with hundreds of bikes, groceries and clothes. All of it was made possible by donations from the community. The Angel Tree program ensures families in need can still make the holidays special.

“It is a two-month process starting from the first week off October. We started with not a single toy in the building. To see it come to fruition, to have those toys, it’s amazing,” Captain Gitau explained.

Families registered ahead of time and let the Salvation Army know exactly what gifts they’d hope to get. Each bag was hand-picked to meet their needs.

“So many families in need in our area especially with this pandemic and everywhere really,” Janet Davis with the Women’s Auxiliary said.

There were volunteers from all over the city, from the Harrisonburg Fire Department to Harrisonburg High School students. They all offered a helping hand to distribute the 270 bikes and more than 1,200 bags full of gifts.

“I’ve been in the part of my life when I needed help. Now that I am in the part where I don’t need help, I want to help out people, it is something that I am really passionate about,” HHS student Belicia explained.

A passion shared by many of the volunteers.

“We meet people under emergency circumstances,” HFD Chief Matthew Tobia said. “When we get to meet people under joyous circumstances it is so affirming. These are people who are in need and it is our opportunity to continue to share the wealth that this community gives.”

Captain Gitau says the giving does not stop with the Angel Tree.

“The kettles are still continuing, Which is a big part because the things that did not get picked we buy and we use the money from the kettles,” she added.

The Red Kettle Campaign is going on now until Christmas Eve, for more information click here.

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