Salvation Army hosted Angel Tree Distribution in Gulfport

Making Christmas a little brighter for families on the Gulf Coast, today the Salvation Army hosted their annual Angel Tree distribution in Gulfport.

Stacy Crandle is the director of social services at the Salvation Army, but once upon a time she too was a mother in need of help during the Christmas holiday.  “I know how it feels to sit on the other side of the desk and need assistance. So, it means a lot that I could give back to parents who I knew how they feel.”

From first-hand experience, Crandle understands from a parent’s perspective what a difference Angel Tree can do for a family in need. “I remember how it felt to wake up one morning and not sure if I was gonna be able to provide Christmas for my family. It means a lot to the parents to see those gifts and be excited about it, about what the community has done for their child.”

Meeting the needs of Angel Tree families doesn’t end with Christmas toys. “We just wanted to be certain that they got a turkey, they got the veggies they got the sides. That they are not only provided toys but a nice hot meal for their kids.”

Not only are over 250 families being gifted Christmas gifts and Christmas meals, as they drive up to the Salvation Army in Gulfport, they are also receiving a prayer. Area Commander Bradley Caldwell said, “That’s what we try to share with them. That God sees them even if they don’t know for sure if they trust him. It’s a chance for them to exercise faith and to know that someone else is praying for them.”

The journey to make this event possible takes a little more than Santa and his elves. “We have volunteers here from Hancock Whitney. We had employees here from the Salvation Army and we had some of our family members that volunteer as well.”

Children received everything from bikes, LOL Dolls, Legos, and much more. “The community has made it happen and we give thanks to everyone that bought a toy, that helped to distribute today, we thank you all.”

“Thank you for helping us do the most good.”

Categories: Featured, Harrison County, Local News, News

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