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All stops being pulled out to make Christmas merry for kids

All stops being pulled out to make Christmas merry for kids
December 14
00:00 2013
(pictured above: Matt Linville mans the collection truck .)

The local Salvation Army Fill the Truck toy drive kicked off last week at two local Walmarts.
Between Nov. 29 and Dec. 15, donation boxes will stand near the entranceways of 1,600 Walmart stores across the nation, allowing customer to donate toys, clothes and other items for children. The Salvation Army will distribute the items this holiday season to families who need them.
Two Men and a Truck, a national moving company, provided a truck that was docked in the parking lot of the Walmart on Peters Creek Parkway last Friday and the Hanes Mill Road location on Saturday, providing residents with another donation drop-off option. The Winston-Salem Salvation Army depends on the campaign to make Christmas merrier for thousands of kids. Seven thousand kids are expected to receive gifts this holiday season.

“People have given a lot, and they continue to give,” said Salvation Army Development Director Matt Linville. “We’re just very, very thankful they continue to be able to let us take care of so many children in Forsyth County.”

Linville manned the truck outside Walmart last Friday afternoon. It was a relatively slow day, but the quality of the donations made up for the lack of quantity. Nine pairs of new boots were left in the store’s donation box, and a donor dropped by the truck to give two new bikes and matching helmets. Board games and a stuffed animal were also donated during Linville’s shift.
Janna Watson, the co-manger at the Peters Creek Walmart,  said having the Fill the Truck bins at the store’s entrance/exit makes it easy for shoppers to give.

Janna Watson is a Walmart co-manager.

Janna Watson is a Walmart co-manager.

“When they’re buying their kids’ stuff, they’ll buy extra to put in there,” she said.
Walmart is also one of the businesses that displays Salvation Army Angel Trees, another one of the agency’s holiday giving programs that encourages customers to fulfill a child’s Christmas wish list after plucking it from a tree. Salvation Army Red Kettle campaign bell ringers are also an omnipresence at Walmart stores.

Two Men and a Truck, whose employees drove the truck to the Salvation Army Christmas Center to unload the donated items, has also been a loyal Salvation Army partner. Joe Windemuller, who owns the local franchise with his wife, Kate, said the company is always looking to help out. It has also donated its trucks and the services of its 25 employees to nonprofits like the March of Dimes and Junior League.

Because Thanksgiving landed later in the month of November this year, the Salvation Army’s toy collecting period is shorter than it has been in past years, according to Linville, making a strong collection effort this year especially necessary.

Because Thanksgiving landed later in the month of November this year, the Salvation Army’s toy collecting period is shorter than it has been in past years, according to Linville, making a strong collection effort this year especially necessary.

Seemingly, local residents are responding to the call to give. The donation bin at the Hanes Mill Walmart, for example, received a lot of attention from holiday shoppers on Saturday. Forty-two toys were collected, officials said.

“To even help one child, it’s well worth it,” Linville said.

 

To donate toys, deliver them to the Salvation Army Christmas Center, 680 Peters Creek Parkway, or place them in Fill the Truck bins at Walmart. Call the Salvation Army at 336-245-2082 for more information. 

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Todd Luck

Todd Luck

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