Des Moines, Iowa USA
Salvation Army News...
Drake InterVarsity volunteers
Wells Fargo volunteers
Drake & Wells Fargo volunteers pack food baskets
Volunteers from Drake University's InterVarsity Christian Fellowship and from Wells Fargo in Des Moines packed food baskets for approximately 1,400 households on Saturday, Dec. 6. The bags and boxes of groceries will be distributed to needy families in the city on Dec. 16-18.
The food baskets provide the groceries needed for an ample and healthy holiday meal. In addition to the canned and packaged goods each recipient family will received a gift certificate for meal, dairy and baked goods.
The number of families that have signed-up for the holiday food baskets this year is up considerably from last year's 941.
DM University students help with nursing home visits
Eighteen Des Moines University students assisted other volunteers and officers with Community Care Ministries nursing home visits on Sunday, Dec. 7. Enrolled in the medical school's physician assistant program, the students assisted in visiting some 3,000 nursing home residents in Polk County on Dec. 7, bringing each resident several small gifts, a smile and Christmas cheer.
Asked why they volunteered for the annual nursing home visits, student Chelsey Bonnett said, "We see the good The Salvation Army does for the community, especially around the holidays. We also loved the opportunity to get out into the nursing homes to interact with the people we will soon be treating in hospital and clinical settings. It keeps us well grounded and reminds us of real human conditions outside our offices."
In addition to assisting with the nursing home visits, Bonnett and several friends rang bells for Red Kettles the next weekend. "We worked for four hours and sang Christmas carols the whole time," she said.
The DMU student volunteers represent several states. Four of the students are from Wisconsin, three from Minnesota, two each from Iowa, Florida and Nebraska and the rest from Missouri, Idaho and Illinois.
Breakfast, gifts for homeless
More than 200 residents of Des Moines homeless shelters enjoyed a hot breakfast, gifts and holiday cheer on Dec. 20. This was the third annual "Feed the Need" breakfast sponsored by the Burger King Corporation, Des Moines Area Regional Transit (DART) and The Salvation Army.
DART provided free round-trip bus transportation to the Burger King restaurant at 655 Walnut Street. After a hot Burger King breakfast and Christmas carols by the Walnut Hill Chorus, the guests each received $15 worth of bus tokens from DART. (In the photo at left, Kirsten Baer-Harding of DART hands bus tokens to a Feed the Need guest while Major Keith Petrie prepares to give the guest a gift from Burger King.)
A Salvation Army brass ensemble provided Christmas music in the atrium just outside the Burger King restaurant where Mr. And Mrs. Santa Claus and two elves provided gifts for each child in attendance.
Gold coins add $3K to Red Kettle total
Remember those seven gold coins deposited in Salvation Army Red Kettles back in December? They added another $3,136 to the Red Kettle total when sold this week. The gold coins brought the Red Kettle total to $683,259 -- nearly 14 percent more than the 2008 goal and three percent more than last year's record total.
"This kind of generosity in a difficult economic time is humbling," said Major Keith Petrie, The Salvation Army's city coordinator in Des Moines. "We are so thankful for the generous people in our community." The Red Kettle campaign generates approximately half of the local Salvation Army's operating budget.
Anonymous donors deposited a total of seven gold coins in Des Moines area Red Kettles in December including three one-ounce South African Gold Krugerrands and four 1/10 ounce U.S. Gold Eagles.
Feed The Children donates food
Volunteers from Concord Hospitality Enterprises Company of West Des Moines helped Salvation Army staff unload two semi-trailers of food, bottled water and personal care items donated by Feed The Children of Oklahoma City. The items were distributed to some 500 metro families who are clients of the Salvation Army's two DMARC food pantries.
Each family received at least one box of food and at least one box of personal care items. The combined value of the two boxes was more than $100.
Some 425 employees and volunteers from Iowa Health Des Moines participated in an annual effort to provide food for The Salvation Army's homeless feeding program in Des Moines in March.
The group prepared, baked and froze 395 egg casseroles, the main dish for the homeless breakfast program, and donated 94 containers of coffee and 81 containers of cocoa mix. The 395 egg casseroles will provide nearly 4,000 generous servings.
The employees and volunteers represented the Iowa Methodist, Iowa Lutheran and Blank Children's Hospital campuses.
An average of 630 individuals are served by The Salvation Army mobile canteen each Tuesday and Friday morning. The two-hour tour of the downtown core begins and ends at the Temple Corps at Sixth and Forest.
Iowa Health effort generates 4,000 meals for homeless program
In the photo at left, IHS employees T. Scott Fordyce (left,) Cheryl Thomas (center) and Sarah Hamilton unload frozen breakfast casseroles, coffee and cocoa mix to The Citadel Corps on March 4.
When U.S. Olympian Lolo Jones received the 2008 Visa Humanitarian Award in December, she directed the $2,500 cash prize to The Salvation Army in Des Moines.
As a child, Lolo and her family were active in the Des Moines Citadel Corps which provided services to the family during a difficult economic time.
The $2,500 contribution will be used to provide emergency housing assistance to families in need.
Last year, after winning a $4,000 prize Lolo donated the money to a victim of the Iowa floods. Earlier in the year, she aided her former high school, Des Monies Roosevelt, by giving each girl on the school's track team a pair of spikes and donated $3,000 to the school to repair its track and buy hurdles.
Lolo is active in the USA Track & Field's Win With Integrity program which promotes a physically active, drug-free lifestyle.
Lolo Jones directs gift to Salvation Army
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