COAL TOWNSHIP – After being hit hard by recent flooding conditions in the area, this year’s Christmas kettle collections will be be “super important,” Judy Orner, director of social services, told members of the Salvation Army Board of Directors.
“We’re starting from scratch,” Orner said, “but, I have no doubt it (funds) will come.” she said she was usually able to stockpile some items for the Christmas baskets, but this year supplies have been “cleaned out.”
“Now it’s time to help the Salvation Army,” Henry Linton, board president, said.
Orner said the kettle kickoff will be Wednesday, Nov. 16, in front of the Walmart center, Route 61, Coal Township. Details will be announced during a future meeting. Anyone interested in helping with the kettle project should call the headquarters at 644-0486.
Orner said she and others were out with the army helping with flood relief. she said 600 to 700 hot meals were served to flood victims and others over a three-day period. she said they served drinks, snacks to take home, and handed out some blankets and toiletry kits. she said the army also handed out clothing vouchers.
“The people coming to the canteen were great,” Orner said. “It had a big impact on people.” some came to the canteen and gave money, she added. It’s a continuing effort, Orner remarked, “we’ll give whatever we have.
“A lot of people needed help, and they still do (need help),” Linton said.
Linton said a lot of merchandise was lost due to flooding conditions at the Thrift Store on Independence Street, but the store is recovering and doing “a bang-up business.” the electrical system in the basement was checked by the landlord.
Orner said the army has to figure out ways to acquire food for the Christmas baskets. Several possible projects were tossed around for future action.
Orner said inmates from SCI Coal Township helped recently with cleaning floors and painting at the headquarters. They will also assist with packing Christmas baskets.
Applications for Christmas assistance (food and/or toys) will be accepted by appointment only from Tuesday, Oct. 25, through Thursday, Oct. 27, from 10 to 11:30 a.m. and from 1:15 to 2:30 p.m. call 644-0486 to make an appointment. No walk-ins will be accepted.
Orner said an audit was conducted and the army ended the year in “pretty good shape” and was commended for its stewardship and being more “self-sufficient.”
Maj. Tina Streck, commanding officer, did not attend due to a family commitment. Board members attending in addition to Orner and Linton, were Janice Kotwica, Mark Anonia, Harry Deitz, William Richie, Lois McCormick, Violette Feudale, Chris Venna and Paul Metrocavage.
Next meeting of the board will be at 6:30 p.m. Nov. 10.