Bowden mother Heather Marshall with daughter Ellis Wilting were volunteering at The Red Deer Salvation Army on Christmas Day. Photo by Mamta Lulla/Advocate staff

Bowden mother Heather Marshall with daughter Ellis Wilting were volunteering at The Red Deer Salvation Army on Christmas Day. Photo by Mamta Lulla/Advocate staff

Salvation Army feeds people on Christmas Day

Year after year, The Red Deer Salvation Army feeds the hungry on Christmas Day.

This year was no different.

Normally about 200 people rely upon the agency for a Christmas meal and around the same number was expected this year.

About 22 meals were delivered to seniors and those with disabilities this year – a service the agency provides to those who can’t make it to the annual dinner.

The volunteer interest this year for the Christmas dinner was high said Major Larry Bridger, pastor and director adding the agency received about 80 requests and was in need of about 25.

“We always get a large number of people asking, but that’s a fairly high number,” he said.

One Bowden mother, Heather Marshall, brought her two children to volunteer Wednesday, noting many of her family members dedicate their time for others during the holidays.

“A few years ago, we would come every other Christmas, my mom and her husband come every year and I think this is their 12th year, so this year there’s seven family members here – seven adults and two kids,” she explained.

The central Alberta mother want her children to carry on the family tradition.

“I want them to live a life of service, and understand they’re blessed and I want them to grow up to be kind.”

This Thanksgiving The Salvation Army in Red Deer fed 300 people – a new record for the local Salvation Army. Bridger said the turnout for Christmas is usually lower than Thanksgiving supper.

Bridger said this Thanksgiving the numbers exceeded their expectation, which was around 230.

“It could be more people that have needs this year, I know there are certainly more people who have lost jobs so they take advantage of a good meal,” said Bridger.

The agency also had a higher request for Christmas hampers this season – an increase of 30 per cent among seniors and eight per cent among families.

The Red Deer Salvation Army’s Christmas kettle campaign numbers are yet to be tallied, but Bridger hopes they’ll meet the goal of $245,000.

The agency was sitting at about $228,000 as of Saturday.

“I think this year the economy has played a part… but the public has been good to us.”



mamta.lulla@reddeeradvocate.com

Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter

Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

Just Posted

Red Deer Regional Airport CEO Graham Ingham has ambitious plans for the airport. (Advocate file photo).
Red Deer Regional Airport revenues climb in 2020

Bringing in more business is the 2021 goal, says director

City council will have to wait longer to hear back from administration on possible alternative sites — if the homeless shelter is moved from Red Deer downtown. (Photo by LANA MICHELIN/Advocate staff).
Alternative sites for homeless shelter will be explored by the City of Red Deer

Council gave administration more time to return with a report

Quentin Lee Strawberry was found not guilty of second-degree murder in connection with stabbing death of Joseph Gallant in March 2019. (Photo from RCMP)
Updated: O’Chiese man found not guilty of 2019 stabbing death of Red Deer man

Quentin Strawberry found guilty of assaulting murdered man’s common-law partner

(Advocate file photo).
City of Red Deer property tax bills are in the mail

Red Deer 2021 tax notices are on their way. Red Deer property… Continue reading

Vancouver Canucks’ Nils Hoglander (36) scores on Winnipeg Jets goaltender Laurent Brossoit (30) during first-period NHL action in Winnipeg on Monday May 10, 2021. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Fred Greenslade
Hoglander scores twice as Vancouver Canucks dump slumping Winnipeg Jets 3-1

Hoglander scores twice as Vancouver Canucks dump slumping Winnipeg Jets 3-1

Edmonton Oilers' Dominik Kahun (21) celebrates with teammate Connor McDavid (97) after scoring the third goal against Montreal Canadiens goaltender Jake Allen (34) during second-period NHL hockey action in Montreal, Monday, May 10, 2021. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Ryan Remiorz
Canadiens clinch playoff spot with single point, fall to McDavid and Oilers in OT

Canadiens clinch playoff spot with single point, fall to McDavid and Oilers in OT

Rory McIlroy tees off on the fourth hole during the fourth round of the Wells Fargo Championship golf tournament at Quail Hollow on Sunday, May 9, 2021, in Charlotte, N.C. (AP Photo/Jacob Kupferman)
McIlroy ends 18 months without winning at Quail Hollow

McIlroy ends 18 months without winning at Quail Hollow

Canada , left to right, lead Briane Meilleur, third Val Sweeting, skip Kerri Einarson, and second Shannon Birchard discuss strategy against Sweden in a qualification game at the Women's World Curling Championship in Calgary, Alta., Saturday, May 8, 2021. Both of Canada's teams were shut out of the medals, marking the first time ever that Canada did not reach the podium at either the men's or women's worlds in the same season. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Jeff McIntosh
Bubble Wrap: Fresh questions for Canada after medal shutout at curling worlds

Bubble Wrap: Fresh questions for Canada after medal shutout at curling worlds

Edmonton Oilers' Connor McDavid (97) celebrates his 100th point this season with Leon Draisaitl (29) against the Vancouver Canucks during second period NHL action in Edmonton on Saturday, May 8, 2021.THE CANADIAN PRESS/Jason Franson
Oilers plan to keep playing McDavid, Draisaitl as NHL regular season winds down

Oilers plan to keep playing McDavid, Draisaitl as NHL regular season winds down

Canada's Tyler Ardron, right, tries to block the kick by Italy's Callum Braley during the Rugby World Cup Pool B match in Fukuoka, western Japan, Thursday, Sept. 26, 2019.  THE CANADIAN PRESS/Kyodo News via AP
Canadian men to face Wales and England in July rugby test matches

Canadian men to face Wales and England in July rugby test matches

John Velazquez, right, rides Medina Spirit ahead of Florent Geroux aboard Mandaloun to win the 147th running of the Kentucky Derby at Churchill Downs, Saturday, May 1, 2021, in Louisville, Ky. THE CANADIAN PRESS/AP/Darron Cummings
Casse believes colleague Baffert deserves “due process” folowing positive test

Casse believes colleague Baffert deserves “due process” folowing positive test

Canada forward Liam Millar (23) moves the ball past Bermuda defender Eusebio Blankendal (2) during the second half of a World Cup 2022 Group B qualifying soccer match Thursday, March 25, 2021, in Orlando, Fla. THE CANADIAN PRESS/AP-John Raoux
Canadian men to play next two World Cup qualifying matches in the U.S.

Canadian men to play next two World Cup qualifying matches in the U.S.

Most Read