More toys and volunteers needed

Nov. 28, 2012 @ 10:01 AM

Staff at the Salvation Army Christmas Cheer Center are asking the public to help buy toys for nearly 1,000 stockings to be distributed to children from birth to 12 years old at Christmas.

Annie Elrod-OBerle, social services director for the Salvation Army, says items such as coloring books, crayons, games, hats/scarf sets, gloves, small dolls, small trucks/cars are needed for young children. Basketballs, footballs, soccer balls are needed for the children up to age 12. She also suggests blankets, rattle toys and other small toys for infant and toddlers. All children will receive a stocking.

Toys can be delivered to the cheer center, located at the Tri-City Mall in the former Transit Damage Freight building.

Christmas Cheer will serve nearly 1,000 Rutherford County children, 529 families and 51 senior citizens.

In addition to the large stockings, each child will receive age appropriate gifts and stuffed bears. The families will receive enough food for Christmas dinner. 

The Salvation Army also needs bell ringers for several stores in the county through Christmas Eve.

“We still have openings for bell ringers. People should volunteer because we are assisting about 529 families and 1,000 children in Rutherford County with Christmas,” said Major Cherry Craddock. “The money that is collected is used to help pay for that. Then, if there is anything leftover after we pay for Christmas, we use it to help people in Rutherford County throughout the year. That money can be used in January and February when they need help with utility bills and food.”

Money will be used to complete the 2012 Christmas needs and if there is money left over it will go to buy food at the Salvation Army Thrift Store in Spindale for distribution in Rutherford.

Families, youth groups, civic organizations and other individuals can volunteer to ring the bells, but younger children must be accompanied by an adult.

“Whatever is raised in Rutherford County, stays in Rutherford County,” Major David Craddock said of the bell ringing campaign.

For more information on how to ring bells or to volunteer at the center, call 704-482-0375.

The center is open Monday-Saturday from 9 a.m. until 4 p.m.