Tuesday, November 26, 2013

Hunger and the Holidays

Although we haven’t yet celebrated Thanksgiving, we are already being surrounded by the sights and sounds of Christmas. Music, advertising, decorations, gift guides; even the Salvation Army has begun its preparation for Christmas. From Angel Tree registration to Bell Ringing schedules and much more, we are well in the midst of our favorite season.

But what about those for whom the holidays aren’t that special: The homeless man crossing the street in the bustle of holiday shoppers; the mother in the grocery store among shoppers buying holiday specialties, while she cannot afford a loaf of bread or a jug of milk?
It is heart breaking to hear stories of Daniel, a single father of a 10-year-old boy who has been struggling since he lost his executive level job. He tells us he has no money and no food and that his electricity will soon be turned off. He is worried his son will spend Christmas sitting in a cold, dark house.

For Daniel, and thousands of families in our community struggling through personal economic crisis, hunger is a dark shadow, always looming. And during this festive Christmas season, it is even harder. Will this be the Christmas where there is no tree, no special dinner, no presents?
But you CAN help. You CAN hold a CANNED food drive to help stock the pantry of The Salvation Army so we can provide a basket of food to Daniel and the thousands of families who will come through our doors to receive Angel Tree gifts. Whether it is at your business, your church, your child’s school or even at your family’s Thanksgiving gathering, anything helps.

Or, you CAN hold your own private drive!

Help us turn this.....                                         

 .... into THIS!

It’s easy! As you go about shopping for Thanksgiving, your Christmas season dinners and parties or just your typical grocery shopping, pick up something extra. We need canned, non-perishable goods and we while we won’t be picky, we especially need canned vegetables, beans, pumpkin, fruit, soup and peanut butter.

Then, bring those cans of food to the west entrance of The Salvation Army Joy Center, 924 S. Hudson, between 9 a.m. and 4 p.m., Monday through Friday, (not Nov. 28 or 29!) through Dec. 6, you’ll be putting a little more “merry” into someone’s Christmas.


Monday, November 25, 2013

Women’s Auxiliary Christmas Luncheon & Fashion Show Helps Holiday Shopping

“Try not to spend too much.”

These are words my husband says to me every year before I head out to The Salvation Army Women’s Auxiliary Christmas Luncheon & Fashion Show. I try to listen to his words of advice, but in the end, I usually come home with a box full of Christmas gifts from the amazing silent auction.

The treasures to be had via the silent auction are many! I now have a beautiful stained glass OU lamp that sits on my desk. Grants Administrator Vicki Thorne got some jewelry to give to her mother-in-law, mom, sister AND grandmother. Development Director Lindsay Sparks can now start her car from anywhere after she got remote start installed.  Jenny McElyea, Volunteer Coordinator, got a gift certificate that will help her organize her house. And last year in a good example of teamwork, the entire Development Department worked together to out-bid everyone to get three gift certificates from Krispy Kreme. 

We really like donuts.

So, of course, all of us at Area Command are looking forward to December 3rd, when the 61st Christmas Luncheon & Fashion Show takes place at the Cox Business Center!

 The 2013 theme is “Sounds of Christmas.”

Silent auction items include restaurant gift certificates, four tickets to a Kansas City Royals game and baskets and services from more than 100 local businesses. The live auction will feature items such as a flight over the Tulsa area in a Bi-Plane, dinner at a Tulsa Fire Station and a Hard Rock Golf getaway package. One lucky attendee will receive a beautiful piece of jewelry donated by Moody’s Jewelry. 

Last year’s event raised more than $115,000.

The Honorary Chair for the event is Konnie Boulter. Platinum donors include Richard and Norma Small and the Oxley Foundation. Silver donors include Stephanie and Al Howerton, Barnett Family Foundation, Debbie Cadieux, Ann McKellar, Burton Foundation and Bank of Oklahoma.

Tulsa media celebrities will model fashions from Miss Jackson’s and serve as escorts for the models. Kristin Dickerson of KTUL-Channel 8 will be master of ceremonies. Models and their escorts include: Dickerson, Caitlin Alexander, Laura Neal and Andrew Kozak of KTUL; Marla Carter, Breanne Palmerini and Justin Wilfon from KJRH; Lori Fullbright, Terry Hood and Rich Lenz from KOTV; Shae Rozzi, Brittany Jeffers and Clay Loney from Fox 23, Ziva Branstetter, Enterprise Editor of The Tulsa World; and Morgan Phillips, senior editor of Tulsa People magazine. The models will also be joined by Salvation Army Women’s Auxiliary members Rozann Knight and Judi Barrett.

Tickets are $65. For reservations, call Barbara Richards Horn at 918-747-8316.

Be warned, if there’s a gift certificate to a place that involves chocolate – you may have to compete against a determined Development Department!


Wednesday, November 13, 2013

Championship Wins for Two Boys & Girls Clubs of Metro Tulsa Football Teams

After months of long practices full of throwing, tackling and wind sprints, the 2013 football season in the American Youth Football Conference came to a close.

It ended on a high note for two teams: the North Mabee Mustangs and the Mabee Red Shield Cowboys. The 4th grade Mustangs team and the 3rd grade Cowboys team both won their championship game!!!

The 4th grade North Mabee Mustang team has a lot of talent. This marks the third year in a row this team has won the championship, winning as Mighty Mites (1st & 2nd grade) and as a 3rd grade team. The 4th grade team has NEVER lost a game!

The 3rd grade Mabee Red Shield team won a hard fought championship game 13-6. Mabee Red Shield’s 6th grade team also made it to the semi-finals.

West Mabee’s football teams also had a successful season. The 3rd, 4th and 5th grade teams all made it to the semi-final rounds of the playoffs.

Congratulations to all of the football teams, coaches, parents and support staff involved in the 2013 season!


Monday, November 11, 2013

Celebrating Veterans

Let me first say "Thank you" to all our service men and women who have protected our freedoms. On behalf of the Tulsa Metro Salvation Army, we are deeply grateful and indebted to you.

The Salvation Army and the United States military have a long and mutually satisfying history. During World War I (the war to end all wars - so we had hoped), Salvation Army personnel were sworn in as Army Privates so they could serve alongside our fighting men in the European theater. Most of these "soldiers" were women. They were trained as nurses and sent to serve in makeshift hospitals behind battle fronts in France. They not only helped mend the bodies of wounded fighting men, they also brought healing to their weary, lonely souls. The Salvation Army "Lassies" sang to the troops, helped them write letters to home, prepared meals, and directed worship services. But the greatest spirit-lifter was the good old American doughnut. The "Doughnut Girls", as they became known, would fry up hundreds of these sugary pastries every day. Soldiers would line up and patiently wait for a taste of home.
During World War II many Salvation Army locations across the United States were used as local USO sites. Soldiers would often times go to the Salvation Army building for relaxation. Salvation Army personnel would play music, show movies, lead games, offer letter writing materials, and serve refreshments for free to help distract soldiers from thoughts of where they had just been, or where they about to go. It was a service that many said helped them get through the war.

Today, in some military towns Salvation Army canteens (mobile kitchens) greet returning soldiers as they disembark from overseas service, serving them and their loved ones snacks and beverages, and giving them "Welcome Home" gifts.

Numerous Salvation Army officers have been commissioned as Chaplains throughout the years and served alongside our soldiers bringing comfort and courage. It has been, and remains to this day, our distinct honor to serve those who serve this country.

Thank you all for your service.

God bless you!

Major Jim Taylor
Tulsa Area Commander