Christmas Happiness to serve more than 1,000 children this year

Published 12:30 am Wednesday, December 20, 2017

SALISBURY — Local residents have been contributing to the Christmas Happiness Fund for nearly a month, and because of those donations the Salvation Army of Rowan County has been able to serve more than 1,000 children and 281 Rowan County families.

The Christmas Happiness Fund has been around since 1952. It was started after Salisbury Post editor Spencer Murphy asked the Rowan County community to dig into its pockets to see that local children who would not have received much for Christmas could get some gifts.

The Salisbury Post collects the donations and turns them over to the Salvation Army. The local organization distributes gift cards that are used at a local businesses to eligible families. Parents are able to buy gifts for their children.

Although the agency will serve more than 1,000 children, the reserve fund has been depleted, which means if there are any last-minute families who need help there are no funds available, said Salvation Army Co-Capt. NaKisha Carr.

“We’ve used the rollover from last year and what has been donated,” Carr said.

Historically, some families who were not able to sign up will request help or first responders who know of a family that lost items in a fire or other dire circumstances will refer the family to the Salvation Army for help.

Carr said at this point, there’s no reserve money to pull from.

“If they were meaning to give, now is the time to send it. Now is not too late,” she said of community contributors.

Technically, today is the last day for contributions. Any donation given afterward will help with last-minute additions and begin the fund for the next year.

Each family is given a $35 gift card for each eligible child that can be used for purchases at Kmart. All gift cards will be distributed today along with aid for families that signed up for the Salvation Army’s Angel Tree project. There are 415 families that will be helped through the Angel Tree gift program.

The two programs combined will help 1,596 children.

This time last year, the community had contributed $51,538.57, which is $9,000 more than what has been given as of Tuesday this year.

Contributions to Christmas Happiness may be delivered to the Salisbury Post, 131 W. Innes St., between 8 a.m. and 5 p.m. weekdays or mailed to Salisbury Post Christmas Happiness Fund, P.O. Box 4639, Salisbury, NC 28145-4639. Make checks payable to Christmas Happiness Fund and indicate how you want your donation listed.

Today’s contributions are:

In honor of our students and staff by the Serving Patriots Club of Southeast Middle School, $462.40
In honor of Sacred Heart Catholic School seventh-grade class by Sacred Heart Catholic School second-grade class, $30
Thomas M. and Joyce H. Caddell, $200
In memory of Sarah Phillips by Fred, Bobby, Anita and Rena, $25
In honor of our law enforcement officers and their families by Carol and Denny White, $150
In honor of St. John’s Lutheran Church staff by Boab and Ann Loeblein, $100
In memory of Gene Wall; we miss you buddy! by Mike and Sarah Surratt, $50
In memory of Bud and Retta McClamrock and Dallie and Darwin Billingsley by Kim and David Billingsley, $100
In memory of Robert (Bob) Parks by Betty Parks, $25
In loving memory of our mom, Lettie Mabry, and sister, Leslie Tucker, by Linda and Terry Thomas, $100
Anonymous, $112.13
In loving memory of my father, James Ryan, and my brothers, Jimmy and Mike Ryan, by Kathy R. Stoessel, $25
In loving memory of Jake Fisher, $100
In memory of M.M. Seamon, George, Stella, Flora, Mary, Marie, Ethel and Gladys by Dot Seamon, $25
In honor of Mitzi Grey by Matthew Storey and Erin Grey, $200
In memory of Mildred Casper, David Miller, Fred Honeycutt, Roy and Pearl Lear, Myra Parnell, Pat Feliciano, Rufus Patterson, Sandy (Don) Hartsell, Sam Bebber and Jimmy Ritchie and in honor of Chris Honeycutt, Johnny Honeycutt, Judy Ritchie and Brenda Lucas; Merry Christmas to everyone by Myra Patterson, $50
In honor of Colleen Belk by Mike, Trisha, Miranda and Tyler Belk, $100
In honor of Gail Overcash by Mike, Trisha, Miranda and Tyler Belk, $100
In loving memory of James H. Betts, Don and Janet Wilson by Jeff and Nancy Wilson, $40
In honor of Brent Watson by Doyt Watson Sunday school class of Salem Lutheran Church, $25
Friday Bridge Club, $200
In memory of Norde and in honor of Saylor, Sophie, Sam, Molly, Ella and Graham, $100
In memory of Lorraine and Bernard Williams and Hazel and Clifford Best and in honor of Sheila and Joe Williams and Pat and Gene Vinson by Brandon, $50
In honor of Brandon, Brad, Neely, Taylor and Asher Vinson by Joe and Sheila, $30
In memory of the deceased co-workers in the County Assessors Office: Wallace Peeler, Bill Snipes, John J. Smith, “Binkie” Williams, Virginia Kluttz, Mae Frances Johnson, Chubby Jordan, Vivian Mull, Margaret Young, Margaret Gobble, and Madolyn Yates by J.W., $30
In honor of Cindy Martin and family, Starla/Gary Smith and family, Dena/Don King and family, Margaret/Dale Basinger and family, and Nelda Rinehart/Floyd Kerr by Lanny and Jo Fowler, $100
Today’s total: $2,529.53
Running total: $41,597.53