Ringing to raise money: Salvation Army aims to help

COLUMBUS, Miss (WCBI) – It’s a familiar sound this time of year: the bell ringers of the Salvation Army.

Captain Thomas Johnson, the group’s commander in Columbus, said those bells are a seasonal reminder of a need that is always in the community.

“Christmas time is hard for our families. There are people who have to choose. ‘So, what am I going to do when I don’t have the funds? When I have family in town? I don’t have the ability to make it happen?’ And so, they are depending on the Salvation Army. And that buys along with us bringing many smiles to many families on Christmas” said Johnson.

The money raised from the kettles funds the Salvation Army’s mission year-round.

“Those funds that are raised, and our goal this year is $100,000 and it is greater than what it was last year. And those funds are used 365 days a year. And so it helps us throughout the year. It helps us to be able to help the ones who need food boxes and those who come through the doors at Christmas and all throughout the year. It expands beyond this time” said Johnson.

The donations have helped many families get through the holiday season, and they have changed lives.

“I have heard stories. A lady was just at Walmart the other day and now she is able to put money in the kettle and it was because she used the Salvation Army. The Salvation Army paid her light bill and helped her get into housing and on her feet. She is now able to put money in that kettle. She told that story to me and I was smiling ear-to-ear because that is the kind of thing we want to continue to do and we want it through the drop of the money in the kettle. That helps us to be able to create stories like that. People that were successful and actually took that hand up and ran off with it and made something better out of themselves,” said Johnson.

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