Thursday, December 23, 2010

One Volunteer's Experience

Merry Eve of Christmas Eve, everyone!

It’s been exactly one year since I volunteered with The Salvation Army over Christmas, and the experience is still as rewarding as ever. On Monday, I helped with Christmas distribution of Angel Tree presents, food baskets, and Toys for Tots. More than 7,000 Angel Tree gifts were donated and distributed, and more than 3,500 families were blessed with food baskets to supply their family with enough food to last them one week.

Every year, distribution is one of the events The Salvation Army organizes to help provide for thousands of Tulsa families during Christmas. Angels are chosen off of the tree, Tulsans go out shopping, toys are dropped off and sorted, food baskets are packed, and families come to get presents for their kids. Without the volunteers, the companies who donate the food, and the Tulsans who pick Angels off of the tree, none of it could be possible.

It is so cool to see the smiles on parent’s faces when they receive presents, stocking stuffers, and a Christmas dinner for their family. Without everyone stepping up and giving their time, many in Tulsa would go without. One of the best quotes of the entire weekend was from a mother, “I get all of this food? All of it? All of it is for me?” And she only received all of it, because of The Salvation Army and its volunteers.

So thank you, Tulsa ! I want to extend a sincere thanks to everyone who came out to help. And I’m sure all of the parents who are wrapping presents and preparing Christmas dinner would say the same.

I made a quick video from distribution, so you can see the behind the scenes like I did.

Happy Holidays,

Wednesday, December 22, 2010

Half Krugerrand Found in Tulsa Kettle

A gold half Krugerrand was found yesterday in a Salvation Army kettle.The coin, made of a half ounce of gold, is valued at $680. The kettle was located at at Reasor’s Foods at 15th and Lewis. Up until last year, a Krugerrand (an African coin made of an ounce of gold) was dropped in a Salvation Army kettle in Tulsa for the last 15 years. No one ever identified the person who contributed the Krugerrands.  Last year, it was found in a kettle in Oklahoma City.

This coin was different from former Krugerrands given in Tulsa in that it was wrapped in a paper with “Merry Christmas” at the top, and typewritten lines from “Great Expectations” by Charles Dickens underneath. In past years, the Krugerrand  has  been wrapped in a dollar bill.

“We are thankful to whoever the generous peron is who gave us the half Krugerrand, because every year Tulsans watch for it to appear in a kettle. But we are also thankful to every person who drops a coin or bill in the kettle,” said Major Williams. The Salvation Army bought gifts and food for 3,500 Tulsa families with contributions from the kettles and Angel Trees this year.


Friday, December 10, 2010

Thank you Monte Cassino

We are so thankful for the 6th grade students at Monte Cassino who raised $12,000 to spend on angels from our Angel Tree.  The kids even did the shopping themselves, amazing.

Check out this great story from the Tulsa World.

Merry Christmas!

Wednesday, December 8, 2010

Cowboys & Mustangs Go to Orlando

1. Families, friends and supporters gave The Mabee Red Shield 6th Grade Cowboys and North Mabee 5th Grade Mustangs a great send off to the AYF National Championship Games in Orlando.
2. Three generations of the Hobson family.
3. Mabee Red Shield girls made signs.
4. Some parents and siblings rode the bus to Orlando with their star athlete.
5. John Williams, Sr. and his son Jayson are taking the trip with Sixth Grade Cowboy Jonathan Williams. Other parents drove and flew to Orlando.
6. Mrs. Jo Bright, left, director of the North Mabee club, sent tutor Peggy Newsome so the athletes could keep up with their school work.

7. There were some excited boys on this bus.
8. Spirits were high among (clockwise from top) Joshua Dunbar, Jaylen Johnson, Jerrmain Moore and Tre-vion Folks, North Mabee 5th Grade Mustangs.
 9.The bus driver was a good match for the teams - she said she had driven a school bus for 8 years before working for the bus line.


Friday, December 3, 2010

Stuff the KHITS RV with Toy!

Thursday, from 7 a.m. to 7 p.m. Mikey B. with KHITS Morning Show will park their RV in the Owasso Walmart parking lot to make it really easy for shoppers to put a toy in the Stuff the KHITS RV promotion. Friday, Nard & Smigga will ask drivers, shoppers and anyone near the Tulsa Walmart at 66th & Memorial to stop and drop off a new, unwrapped toy. This is KHITS’ way of helping ensure that all the kids whose parents have signed up for Christmas assistance get what they want on Christmas morning! The Salvation Army will help an estimated 7,000 kids, so please Stop ‘n Stuff – we need all the toys we can get! 


Thursday, December 2, 2010

Angel Trees Go Up at Malls- Thank You Promenade & Woodland Hills!

As the race to buy Christmas presents takes off, shoppers at Promenade Mall and Woodland Hills Mall will notice Salvation Army Angel Trees have gone up. Approximately 3,500 families have registered to receive Christmas assistance through the Salvation Army and adopting a person from an Angel Tree ensures that the children or senior citizen who have signed up will get what they’ve requested. Shoppers can ‘adopt’ an angel by stopping at an Angel Tree and talking to a volunteer about the age and gender of the person they want to adopt. Then they buy the gifts requested on the Angel tag and take them back to the mall by Dec. 13. Along with the Angel gifts, the Salvation Army gives the families groceries that will feed a family of four about a week. Our generous, long time Angel Tree media sponsors are KOTV-Channel 6 and K95.5 FM radio.
KOTV’s Dick Farout takes the first tag off the tree at Promenade Mall.

The Salvation Army Brass Ensemble plays at the Woodland Hills Opening Ceremony.

Jim Carey of the Cash & Carey Show on K95.5 amuses his son by conducting the ensemble.

KOTV's LeAnne Taylor reads the tags of the two angels she and her son Nick have chosen, while Major Kathy Williams watches.

A couple gets help with deciding who they want to adopt from the Angel Tree.

Wednesday, December 1, 2010

Orlando, Here We Come!

Up to 50 football players from the Salvation Army North Mabee and Mabee Red Shield Boys & Girls Clubs will leave Fri., Dec. 3 for Orlando to play in the American Youth Football (AYF) national championship games. The teams, the Fifth Grade North Mabee Mustangs and the Sixth Grade Mabee Red Shield Cowboys, are the league’s regional champions.

The kids will have a send-off ceremony starting at 5:30 p.m. Friday at the North Mabee Boys & Girls Club, according to Sam Berry, Athletic Director of the Mabee Red Shield Club. Monday, Coach Berry was interviewed about the teams and the upcoming trip on Sports Night with Mike Wolfe. The show will air today through Friday at 6:30 p.m. and 10 p.m.

Jerome Smith, Director of the Mabee Red Shield club and volunteer Coach Philip Abode from the North Mabee Club will be with the kids on the trip. Other volunteer coaches, parents and team supporters are driving and flying to Orlando to be with the kids. They have all worked hard raising the $10,000 needed to fund the trip. The national championship games will end Fri., Dec. 10 and the kids will come home Sat., Dec. 11. While in Orlando, the Mabee Red Shield Cowboys  will go to Disney World and Universal Studios and the North Mabee Mustangs will see an Orlando Magic basketball game and go to Universal Studios.

Way to go, Mustangs and Cowboys! Have an unforgettably great time – you deserve it!