Maple Creek News-Times
‘Tis the season to be jolly busy for The Salvation Army.
From ordering turkeys and ham to dealing with applications for Christmas assistance, from bringing in toys to organizing bell-ringing, the Salvationists are not so much on the march, as on a lung-bursting sprint.
“We are gearing up for Christmas,” said Major Ed Dean. “Christmas doesn’t start on Dec. 23. It starts well before that.”
This year, of course, will be different because of COVID-19.
Hamper applications for help with food and/or toys during the holiday season are now being filled online.
The Salvation Army Food Bank is in decent shape — but could do with extra nourishment.
“It’s looking pretty good,” said Major Ed Dean. “We are seeing things pick up, but we did miss the Halloween food drive this year, so we are not sure how things will look in a few weeks.
“If monetary donations come in we can purchase items and refill the food bank. We had a load of stuff today — coffee, flour and stuff like that.”
On the needed list, said Major Ed, are: crackers, soup, pasta sauce, pasta, cereals, noodles, side dish products and scalloped potatoes.
“We accept anything you would eat in your home. We ask it not be expired.”
Major Ed said turkeys were always in demand over Christmas.
“We have ordered turkeys and we will take turkeys from anyone,” he said.
Traditionally, the Hutterite communities have always been very generous to The Salvation Army.
“We do appreciate all of (what) they do for us,” said Major Ed.
“Most of the vegetables in our food bank come from the colonies. They do need to be recognized for their generosity. We have already picked up close to 3,000 pounds of potatoes this fall. We use them every day, along with eggs, squash, carrots and other vegetables. It’s appreciated every time.”
Major Ed said Food Banks of Saskatchewan was starting its fundraising. Maple Creek would get a portion of funds raised.
“Nutrien is part of the sponsor group this year, and they are encouraging people to give to their local food bank and they will top it up. Many things are happening around this time of year.”